The Benedictine life is both ordinary and human, extraordinary and divine. It is ordinary and human because St. Benedict in his Rule encourages us to get on with the business of monastic life; it is extraordinary and divine because it is a response to a call from God and it is a life lived for others. Welcome to St. Scholastica Priory, a community of sisters located in Petersham, Massachusetts.
In 2014 St. Scholastica Priory will host two Monastic Experience Weekends for young women interesting in discerning their vocation by living with the community for a few days to see their life at close hand: from February 14-16 and from August 8-10. For information on the weekends held in 2013 please click here.
If you are a single Catholic woman between the age of 18-40, and would like to discuss and discern a monastic vocation, dates can be arranged outside of the Monastic Weekends.
On September 22, 2012 novices Sr. Mary Emmanuel Wade and Sr. Mary Therese Morales made their simple (first) vows. Here’s an article from the Catholic Free Press on the profession ceremony.
On April 20, 2013, two public conferences for the Year of Faith were hosted by St. Mary’s Monastery and St. Scholastica Priory. To listen to them click here:
by Fr. Robert Imbelli
by Mother Mary Elizabeth Kloss, OSB
This coming week has a number of beautiful feast days. The first one is tomorrow, The Dedication of the Basilicas of Sts. Peter and Paul. Yes, that did say “basilicas” because we are celebrating the dedication of two churches: Stm Peter’s (the Vatican) and St. Paul (Outside the Walls.) I had the joy of visiting both these churches in September of 2012. There is so much history in both of these buildings! The basilica of St. Peter stands on the site of the tomb of the Prince of the Apostles, where stood Nero’s circus. It was here that St. Peter was executed. Recent excavations have shown that the present basilica which, in the seventeenth century replaced the ancient Constantinian basilica, was built over the tomb of St. Peter, just as the previous basilica had been. St. Paul-outside-the-Walls, situated at the other end of the city on the Ostian Way, is built near the place St. Paul was martyred. It was almost completely destroyed by fire in 1823 and was rebuilt in sumptuous fashion by Gregory XVI and Pius IX, and consecrated by the latter on December 10, 1854. We celebrate these churches together as way of uniting the great apostles that are connected in Holy Scripture, where they preached and where they both died in the city of Rome, a place of pilgrimage for the universal Church from the earliest times.
Thursday the 21st, is the Feast of the Presentation of Mary in the Temple. This event comes to us through a writing dated before the 3rd Century. It is part of the Church’s tradition. The story relates that in thanksgiving for the birth of their daughter Mary, Joachim and Anne decided to consecrate her to God and bring her, at the age of three years, to the temple in Jerusalem. Mary’s presentation in the temple draws parallels to that of the prophet Samuel, whose mother Hannah, like St. Anne, was also thought to be barren, and who offered her child as a gift to God at Shiloh. It has become a day when many religious have made their religious vows.
The next day is the feast of St. Cecilia, one of the most famous of the Roman martyrs of the 2nd Century. Her story has tales of Old Roman familia, romance, visions and an awful death. This is a link to learn more of her and to see some of the most famous depictions of her: St. Cecilia.
Next Sunday is the last Sunday of the Liturgical Year of the Church – Christ the King. It is a perfect way for the Church year to begin to come to a close. Jesus reigning as King, having achieved all His work of bringing the love to the Father to all the human family. It is a glimpse of the fulfillment of Christ’s work at the end of this world, but not of the end of life: life overflowing and without end!
Every blessing in this week! You’ll be in our prayers. Pray for us!
Love and prayers always!
Mother Mary Elizabeth, OSB