Tag Archives: Portsmouth Abbey

Portsmouth Abbey monks dedicate Lourdes Grotto

Magnificat, anima mea Dominum!

Caedmon Holmes blesses Grotto.jpg

Earlier today my friend Peter and I journeyed to Portsmouth Abbey and School for the blessing of the Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto.  An outdoor shrine to dedicated to the Virgin Mary who appeared in Lourdes France in the 19th century. Abbot Caedmon led the blessing and School choir sang the traditional hymns to Our Lady.
Abbot Caedmon drew our attention to the humility of Mary appearing to Saint Bernadette asking her to tell the world of the need for prayer and penance. A message clearly consistent with the Gospel of Christ. It is Mary, the Mother of God, Mother of the Church who calls us to greater fidelity to her Son and Our Savior, Jesus. And so the Gospel and Our Lady of Lourdes, so with us today.
The Grotto dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes on the west side of the Portsmouth Abbey campus is the generous gift of an anonymous former student and benefactor of Portsmouth. The generosity of this man is borne of his desire to make the Virgin Mary of Lourdes known and to inspire among those connected with Portsmouth the enduring commitment of faith, reason and service for one’s salvation and the salvation of the world. A significant example of this witness is that the Abbey School, for the last 34 years, has joined with the Ampleforth Abbey Pilgrimage (England) for a service to trip to assist the sick on pilgrimage seeking a divine healing and cure at the great Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes in southern France in July.
The stone for the Grotto was harvested from the Abbey property (as was the stone used for the Abbey Church) and a local landscaping crew did the labor. Benedictine Brother Joseph contributed his expertise to the project.

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Portsmouth Institute announces the 2012 conference: “Modern Science, Ancient Faith”

The Portsmouth Institute is set to begin its third year of work from June 22-24, 2012, with the theme of “Modern Science, Ancient Faith.” 

The Institute is located at Portsmouth Abbey and School (Portsmouth, RI).
Check the website for more information.

Saint John the Evangelist

St John on Pathmos ACano.jpgToday, the Church celebrates the liturgical memorial of the Beloved disciple, Saint John the Evangelist. As you know, John is the great theologian, perhaps you might say after Saint Paul, of Jesus. His Gospel is a superb love story.

At dinner tonight Abbot Caedmon of Portsmouth Abbey blessed wine. It was a wonderful experience to hear the prayers used and a churchman pointing to a significant Catholic sacramentality that’s not often seen today.

Saint Gregory the Great

Gregory the Great Matthew Aldreman.jpgFor Gregory the Great, a hinge figure between the ancient world — the Senate of Rome last met while Gregory was the city’s bishop — a hinge between the ancient world and the grand experiment called Christendom, for Gregory this awareness that to look upon the face of Christ brought knowledge of God inspired an extensive exploration of Scripture to discern how God would have us live, how the Church and its leaders could best serve those seeking to know Christ Jesus and the Father. Since rightful authority comes from God, Gregory reasoned, its exercise must ever include a pastoral intent.



Father James Flint, OSB

Saint Procopius Abbey

3 September 2011





Let us pray for the Benedictine monks of Portsmouth Abbey, Portsmouth, Rhode Island, on this their abbey’s patronal feast day. May God prosper the work of their hands!


You may also be interested in the 2010 blog post that has a hymn to Saint Gregory the Great by J. Michael Thompson. 

Simple beauty of an abbey’s well

The well at Portsmouth Abbey. Beauty expressed simply.
Well Portsmouth Abbey.JPG

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.
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