Some Year of Faith initiatives
The monks, nuns and oblates of Saint Mary’s Monastery and Saint Scholastica Priory in Petersham, MA, had a day of reflection on October 20th that covered the New Evangelization and the Benedictine charism. Dr. Philip Zaleski, an Oblate of the monastery and Father Christophe Vuillaume, OSB, a monk at Saint Mary’s gave the two presentations.
Dr Zaleski is a professor at Smith College and a published author, and Dom Vuilaume is a priest and monk who as served at the request of the Subiaco Congregation in various locations,as of now he’s serving at Saint Mary’s.
The Monastery is celebrating 25 years of foundation this year. The monks belong to the Subiaco Congregation which is one of the largest groupings of monks and nuns in the world. Most often monasteries in the Subiaco Congregation do not engage in outside works and rely on the generosity of others. At Saint Mary’s. the Divine Office is prayed according to the traditional form of the Antiphonale Monasticum; Holy Mass is celebrated according to the Novus Ordo with the ordinary of the Mass prayed in Latin.
The nuns of Saint Scholastica Priory follow a traditional monastic life. They share the monastic church with the monks for some of the prayer times and Mass but have their own work. They were blessed recently to have two novices profess simple vows.
Hard to believe that 15 years have passed since John Paul’s post synodal exhortation Ecclesia in America. It is a remarkable document in my opinion, even though it touches on many very serious problems that we need to face from Alaska to Argentina. We hear nothing of this document these days. Every so often we hear a reference to it when a hierarch wants to say something intelligent about the situation at hand in America. Perhaps we could go back to EA with fresh eyes. What is clear is to work on ways for greater communion and solidarity with the Christians across the boarders.
We need to continue to answer the thematic of the “Encounter with the living Jesus Christ: The way to conversion, communion and solidarity in America.” We can’t set tight with only what John Paul gave us to think on, and to work on. The strength of the Church in America rests not merely on our own solution to the matters at hand but also to our persistent call to holiness.
To honor the publication’s anniversary events have been scheduled in Rome from 9-12 December. Among the presentations/dialogue we have:
Happy to see that Carl Anderson, supreme knights of the Knights of Columbus was chosen as one the presenters for today’s conference. He gives gravitas coupled with reasonableness. You may want to listen to Carl Anderson’s interview with Vatican Radio it is here.
Mr Anderson’s remarks:
As a lay
organization that has been in the United States, Canada, Mexico – and other
parts of Latin America – for more than a century, we are particularly aligned
with the vision presented in Ecclesia in America, and are working with the
Church in our hemisphere on the project of the New Evangelization.
re-reading Ecclesia in America 15 years after the close of the Synod for
America held here in Rome in November and December 1997, three things stand out
to me as particularly important to our discussion here and at the conference
The Pope’s homily at the close of the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization.
The miracle of
the healing of blind Bartimaeus comes at a significant point in the structure
of Saint Mark’s Gospel. It is situated at the end of the section on the
“journey to Jerusalem”, that is, Jesus’ last pilgrimage to the Holy City, for
the Passover, in which he knows that his passion, death and resurrection await
him. In order to ascend to Jerusalem from the Jordan valley, Jesus passes
through Jericho, and the meeting with Bartimaeus occurs as he leaves the city –
in the evangelist’s words, “as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a
great multitude” (10:46). This is the multitude that soon afterwards would
acclaim Jesus as Messiah on his entry into Jerusalem. Sitting and begging by
the side of the road was Bartimaeus, whose name means “son of Timaeus”, as the
evangelist tells us. The whole of Mark’s Gospel is a journey of faith, which
develops gradually under Jesus’ tutelage. The disciples are the first actors on
this journey of discovery, but there are also other characters who play an
important role, and Bartimaeus is one of them. His is the last miraculous
healing that Jesus performs before his passion, and it is no accident that it
should be that of a blind person, someone whose eyes have lost the light. We
know from other texts too that the state of blindness has great significance in
the Gospels. It represents man who needs God’s light, the light of faith, if he
is to know reality truly and to walk the path of life. It is essential to
acknowledge one’s blindness, one’s need for this light, otherwise one could
remain blind for ever (cf. Jn 9:39-41).
The head of the US bishops and archbishop of New York, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, just finished with many others, work at the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization in Rome. The Synod called by the Pope is tasked to advise him on questions that concern him in his pastoral leadership of the Church.