Tag Archives: Sant’Anselmo

Rome’s Pontifical Liturgical Institute celebrates 50 years, Pope marks event

PIL cinquanta logo.jpgThis week the Pontifical Liturgical Institute centered
at the Pontifical Athenaeum of Saint Anselm (AKA Sant’Anselmo) held the
Ninth International
Congress on the Liturgy
in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of Institute’s
foundation. The theme of the congress was “The Pontifical Liturgical Institute:
Between Memory and Prophecy.” In the Clementine Hall, the Pope met with Abbot Notker Wolf, Abbot Primate and Chancellor of the Pontifical Athenaeum, Dom Juan Javier Flores, professors and participants in the Congress. The Italian version of the Pope’s talk is here; he English translation: Benedict XVI to Pontifical Liturgical Institute May 6 2011.pdf  
The Pope said several noteworthy things, among them:

“Blessed John XXIII, recognizing the requests of
the liturgical movement that sought to give new impetus and a new spirit to the
Church’s prayer, shortly before Vatican Council II and during its celebration,
asked the faculty of Benedictines on the Aventine Hill to establish a center
for study and research to ensure a solid basis for conciliar liturgical
reform,” said Pope Benedict XVI.

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Sant’Anselmo: home to Benedictine monks, Rome

Thumbnail image for IMGP1279.JPGFor a number of years now, when I am in Rome, I stay at the Benedictine Abbey of Sant’Anselmo on the Aventine Hill. The Benedictine monks have been on the Aventine since property was purchased from Pope Leo XIII in the late 19th century. Technically, Sant’Anselmo is not a functioning abbey as other abbeys with a stable monastic community but it’s a house of studies for monks and others.  There is an order for the day of prayer, Mass, study, and work but one does not become a monk of Sant’Anselmo as you would become a monk of Saint Vincent’s. At the Anselmo you’ll find a “permanent” faculty and staff, and a group of monks who work in the Abbot Primate’s offices and some monks who work at other universities or at the Vatican, but no monk vows stability to Sant’Anselmo.

Sant’Anselmo serves as the home of several entities: the Abbot Primate (Abbot Notker Wolf), the Pontifical Liturgical Institute, the Mabillion Institute, and the College of the Theology and Philosophy.
On Ash Wednesday the pope begins the season of Lent by starting with prayer at Sant’Anselmo before making a procession with the Benedictines and Dominicans to the nearby Santa Sabina for the Sacrifice of the Mass.
Two videos will give you sense of the Anslemo: video 1 and video 2. Sorry, the first one is in Italian but the images are good and it gives a good walking tour of the house, while the second gives a sense of other places on the Aventine but video footage includes the Anselmo.

Pope visit monks of Sant’Anselmo to begin Lent

B16 Notker Wolf & Elias Lorenzo.jpgMy friend Dom Elias Lorenzo, monk of St. Mary’s Abbey
(Morristown, NJ), is currently serving as the Superior and Prior of the Abbey
of Sant’Anselmo
in Rome, Italy, the headquarters of international Benedictine
 and home to the Pontifical Liturgical Institute.

In his capacity
as Father Prior of Sant’Anselmo, Dom Elias recently (February 17, 2010) welcomed Pope Benedict XVI to Sant’Anselmo
on the Aventine Hill. The Pope’s visit to Sant’Anselmo is an annual event to begin the Lenten season on Ash Wednesday with a procession from the Abbey Church to
the Church of Santa Sabina, the headquarters of the Order of Friars Preachers
(the Dominicans) where the Sacrifice of the Mass is celebrated.

The Holy Father was greeted by Abbot Primate Notker Wolf (also German) and
Dom Elias, who escorted him into the basilica where he prayed before the Blessed
Sacrament. There the Pope stopped for a brief prayer, before beginning Mass at
the chair. Dom Elias said, “This is a unique liturgy in that the Pope
intones a penitential litany and the monks, visiting bishops and cardinals
process from Sant’Anselmo to Santa Sabina for the rest of the Mass.” The
pope vests for Mass at Santa Sabina.

Sant’Anselmo gets new Prior

Dom Elias.jpg

Dom Elias R. Lorenzo, a monk of the Abbey of Saint Mary, has been appointed the new Prior of Sant’Anselmo in Rome, the international house of studies for Benedictines. As prior Dom Elias will be working with the Abbot Primate, Notker Wolf, as the man in charge of the daily running of the monastic community, the superior of the monks and he’ll work on special canonical projects for the Benedictine Confederation, especially with the Holy See. His competence, insight and humor will be well-received in Rome as it has been at his home abbey (as I can attest) and in his other ministries.

Dom Elias succeeds Dom Michael Naughton, a monk of Saint John’s Abbey, Collegeville, MN.

May God abundantly bless Dom Elias!

Benedictine Abbots to meet in Rome

The 2008 Congress of Abbots also occurs every four years which gathers the nearly 260

St Benedict6.jpgBenedictine abbots from around the world to discuss topics of interest. The Abbot Primate Notker Wolf said the purpose of the Congress  “Promotes the union of the Confederation, by extending its contacts with its many souls.” The meeting will take place at the Abbey of Saint Anselm from the 18th to 27th September.  


Among the presenters will be the esteemed Preacher to the Papal Household Father Raniero Cantalmessa, OFM Cap, who will make a presentation entitled, “What the Spirit is Saying to the Churches.” Plus, the recently retired Abbot General of the Trappists, Abbot Bernardo Olivera will deliver a talk called “Experiences as a Monk and as a Monastic Superior.”

Abbot Notker said there will be workshops and committee work on some major subjects, such as the monasteries with diminishing numbers of monks and nuns, ecumenical and inter-faith dialogue, matters pertaining to the African monasteries, the relation between monasticism

Thumbnail image for Notker Wolf2.jpgand the Church, and the relationship between between abbots and priests. The congress will also be attended by the Benedictine sisters and nuns who will be involved in a discussion about the relations between men’s and women’s monasteries. Discussions will also happen on the work and funding of the various institutes and academic departments, including the Pontifical Liturgical Institute, at Sant’Anselmo.


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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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