Category Archives: Benedictines

Conception Abbey’s 10th Abbot: Benedict Neenan

abbot-benedict-neenanThis afternoon the capitulars of Conception Abbey elected Father Benedict Neenan, 67, as their 10th abbot, succeeding Abbot Gregory Polan who was elected abbot primate in September. Until today, Neenan has served as Business Manager of Conception Abbey and Development Director. As abbot of the 143 year old community, Benedict will follow the Rule of St Benedict where it is written that “He is believed to hold the place of Christ in the monastery, since he is addressed by a title of Christ, as the Apostle indicates: You have received the spirit of adoption of sons by which we exclaim, abba, father (Rom 8:15).” The abbot of a Benedictine community holds the place of Jesus Christ in the community. As a theological statement we accept this fact by faith.

The new Abbot is 28 years ordained priest and a former President/Rector of Conception Seminary (1996-2008). Among the obediences he has served count: a seminary professor of theology and Church history;  Prior of Conception Abbey (1990-1993); spiritual director for seminarians and lay people, monastic Vocations Director, and a retreat master in the Abbey Guest Center. He was born in Kansas City, MO.

Abbot Benedict is the author of Thomas Verner Moore: Psychiatrist, Educator and Monk.

Conception Abbey is a daughter house of the Swiss abbey, Engelberg Abbey, founded in 1873.

May Saint Benedict and all Benedictine saints and blesseds richly bless Abbot Benedict and the abbatial community.

Br Victor-Antoine d’Avila-Latourrette publishes “Christ the Merciful”

christ-the-mercifulBrother Victor-Antoine d’Avila-Latourrette explores the absolute centrality of Christ in the prayer life of any Christian. The end result is a comprehensive confession of his faith and testimony to the many “names of Christ” that cross through historical, monastic, and mystical traditions. Keeping true to the hope for a unified Church, Christ the Merciful incorporates both Western and Eastern Orthodox sources.

Chapters situating Christ in context of his life in Palestine, his role as a son, friend, and family member, and his place in the living history of the church all help to create a full, well-rounded portrait of his divine and human lives. By viewing Christ through these various facets, the book helps readers enrich their relationship to the mystery of God, adding contour to their spiritual journey.

Brother Victor-Antoine makes difficult concepts clear in a straightforward manner, informed by years of Benedictine monastic practice.

Richly grounded in Scripture, in the Fathers of the Church, in both Eastern and Western traditions and, above all, in the fruit of his own prayer, Brother d’Avila-Latourrette’s meditations on the many names of Jesus offers us the opportunity to meet Christ anew every day. Just like Andrew and John, or Philip, Zacchaeus, Bartimeus or the centurion, Jesus’ entry point into each of our lives is unique. He has called each of us by name, and with the help from Brother Victor-Antoine, we are reminded of how much we long to hear Jesus and need to hear him speaking to us in all aspects of our life and faith.
 
— Father Tim S. Hickey, contributor to Magnificat, priest of the Archdiocese of Hartford, former editor of Columbia magazine (Knights of Columbus).

Basilica of St. Benedict has collapsed

norcia-basilicaThis morning, at approximately 7:40 a.m.  (Rome time) another earthquake struck central Italy. The Media is reporting that it was 6.6. From the pictures you can see the aftermath: the destruction Norcia Basilica. Indeed, the Basilica of St. Benedict has collapsed.

Please pray for Father Cassian and the monks of Norcia and all this affected by these earthquakes.

Recent earthquakes have been felt in Rome and while no great damage to buildings there, there is damage appearing to places like St. Paul Outside the Walls, cracks showing at the top part of the colonnade.

From Prime Minister to Benedictine Abbot

lou-tseng-tsiangThe last pre-communist prime ministers of China, Lou Tseng-Tsiang (12 June 1871 – 15 January 1949) a robust thinker, diplomat, spiritual and religious man converted to the Catholic faith from Protestantism and became a Benedictine monk, and lived with the hope of bringing a robust Catholic life to China.

The early life of Lou Tseng-Tsiang was spent as a domestic and international diplomat having achieved proficiency in French and Russian. Following the death of his wife, Berthe Bovy, he retired; in 1927 became a postulant at the Benedictine Abbey of Sant Andre (Bruges, Belgium) taking the name Dom Pierre-Célestin; he was ordained priest in 1935.

Pope Pius XII honored Dom Pierre-Célestin in August of 1946 by bestowing on him the honor of being the titular abbot of the Abbey of St. Peter, Ghent. In 1945, Abbot Pierre-Célestin published his memoirs, Souvenirs et pensées.

A fine introduction by Frank Weathers can be found here.

Dom Pierre-Célestin himself wrote about his faith journey in these words: “My conversion is a vocation. God led me, and He called upon me. My task for myself has, then, been extremely simple. It was enough for me to recognize what I saw, what events and circumstances, and the grace of God plainly showed me, and, to this constant and clear vocation, to respond by fulfilling the first duty of conscience, which is to obey God.”

Mother Marie Adele Garnier’s canonization cause opens

adele-garnierVatican opens cause for canonization Mother Marie Adele Garnier, OSB. Mother now carries the title of Servant of God.

Two pieces to look at:

The Catholic Herald (article)

The monastic communities founded by Garnier (video)

This is REAL GOOD news!

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
coat of arms

Categories

Archives

Humanities Blog Directory