Mepkin Abbey offers Contemplative Aging Retreats
Sunday, June 30, 2013 - 14:57

Mepkin Abbey, a Cistercian monastery, provides a serene place of natural beauty and quiet – the perfect setting - to help participants find the contemplative practice best suited for them. During the Contemplative Aging Retreat various contemplative practices are explored as a way to welcome the inner life of self development and spiritual growth as we move into elder-hood. Through contemplative dialogue and sharing common experiences and fears of aging, participants have an opportunity to view aging as a gift. In companionship with fellow elders, the retreat is an opportunity to harvest the wisdom aging brings and to find spiritual ways to navigate its stages.

The retreat begins Friday evening and lasts until the noon meal on Monday. It is conducted by one of the monks with a qualified team. Twenty participants can be accommodated. A limited number of rooms are available at the Abbey for those who may wish to join the monks for their times of prayer. Others will be housed off-campus but meals are provided on campus.

The next scheduled retreat is October 4 - 7, 2013. You can find out more information by visiting this web site.

Sr. Cathy makes her solemn profession at Santa Rita
Wednesday, June 5, 2013 - 13:58

Sr. Cathy will profess her solemn vows on June 8 at Santa Rita in Arizona.

A native of South Korea, Sr. Cathy was a member of a missionary community before she transferred to Santa Rita in 2009.  She holds a degree in theology and was active as a member of the formation team in her former congregation.  Sr. Cathy LOVES the Cistercian life and lives it with much faith and joy. 

Mother Vicki of Santa Rita writes, "All of us here are delighted that she will be a permanent member of our community.  Her mother and sister will be coming for her solemn profession – from Korea!  It will be a joyful day for us all!"

Junior Monks and Nuns Gather for Junior Seminar
Thursday, May 16, 2013 - 17:13

On Monday, May 20, the American region begins a seminar for Juniors, those monks and nuns who have made profession for a limited time. On that day our juniors will gather at Mount St. Mary Abbey in Wrentham, MA.

The first week will feature conferences by Mother Maureen McCabe, the abbess of Mount St. Mary. She will "work with several themes dear to the Cistercian heart by means of the commentary on the Song of Songs begun by Bernard of Clairvaux, continued by Gilbert of Hoyland and completed by John of Forde." Some of these themes include love of God and neighbor, monastic observances as a means to contemplative prayer and perfect love, continual mindfulness, and the alternation of experience.

The second week will feature conferences by Dom Augustine Roberts, formerly abbot at Spencer, on Cistercian Profession today, background, content and meaning. He will speak of new life under the law of grace, conversatio morum, poverty, chastity, dimensions of obedience and stability, among other topics.

The visiting juniors will be able to participate in the liturgical life of Mount St. Mary; they will have time to get to know other monks and nuns from other houses in the region. One day they will journey to St. Joseph's Abbey in near-by Spencer, MA.  A volleyball tournament is likely!

Br. Theodore Daly, 1928 - 2013, of Genesee
Monday, May 6, 2013 - 14:50

Br. Theodore was born in Philadelphia, Pensylvania the sixth of eight children of a devout closely-knit Irish-American Catholic family. He graduated from Northeast Catholic High School for Boys in 1946, and then worked for three years in a paper mill, where he showed great zeal and ardor for work.

Brother Theodore entered Gethsemani as a laybrother in 1949, and came to Genesee as one of the founders in 1951. For many years he played a major role in the bakery, feeding the oven and doing other work in the bread bakery, and developing a number of fruticakes, cakes, and cookies. He did all this work with tremendous energy, as an expression ofr his love for God and the community.

He also did a lot of bookbinding work, and kept the Abbey Chronicle for a long time. He loved to walk in the woods, saying his rosary. And he planted many evergreen trees along the banks of Salt Creek.

Br. Thedore was always very faithful to prayer, both liturgical and solitary, and to lectio divina. He was very reliable, a true spiritual pillar of the community. He died in the Abbey infirmary, and his funeral was attended by a large number of members of his family.

Solemn Profession at Gethsemani, May 5, 2013
Monday, April 29, 2013 - 13:44

Br. Gregory Escardo will make his solemn vows at Gethsemani the sixth Sunday of Easter, May 5, 2013.

Prayer for Vocations
Sunday, April 21, 2013 - 07:35




Most gracious Father,

in setting up the New Monastery

our fathers followed the poor Christ into the desert.

Thus they lived the Gospel

by rediscovering the Rule of Saint Benedict in its purity.


You gave Bernard of Fontaine

the ability to make this new life attractive and appealing to others,

in the joy of the Holy Spirit.


Grant that we today, after their example,

may live our charism deeply

in a spirit of peace, unity, humility,

and above all, in the charity which surpasses all other gifts.

May men and women of our time

be newly called to follow the Gospel in monastic life,

in the service of the Church’s mission,

and in a world forgetful of You.


Remember Lord, Cîteaux,

where Bernard arrived with his companions.

May the brothers there

continue to live in the enthusiastic and generative spirit of the founders.


Remember all who live the Cistercian charism.


Remember all Cistercian communities,

those which are aging and those newly-born,

in all parts of the world, north and south, east and west.

Let them not lose courage in times of trial,

but turn to her whom Bernard called the Star of the Sea.


Holy Father,

from whom we have already received so much,

grant us again your blessing

that our communities may grow in numbers,

but above all in grace and in wisdom,

to your glory,

who are blessed for ever and ever.


Tour the "Heritage Center" at Holy Spirit Abbey
Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 13:36

The Heritage Center at Holy Spirit Abbey, completed in June of 2011, offers visitors an engaging and thorough introduction to the community of monks who live there and the centuries old monastic tradition of which they are stewards.  Take an enjoyable and informative video tour of the Heritage Center here.   


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