Solemn Profession

Brother Peter Shults, O.S.B. made his solemn (final) profession of monastic vows on the Feast of St. Benedict at St. Gregory’s Abbey Church, Shawnee, OK.

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Synod of Presidents

Abbot Primate Gregory Polan, O.S.B. convoked the annual Synod of Abbots President at Tepeyac Abbey in Mexico on September 9, 2019. This year our own monastic Congregation hosted this Synod. The Abbots President received reports from the Rector, Prior and Treasurer of Sant’Anselmo. In accordance with the Lex Propria, they also approved the Subsidium and Solidarity funds to Sant’Anselmo for FY19-20. Representatives of Communio Internationalis Benedictinarum (C.I.B.), which is the international association of Benedictine women, joined the Synod on September 11, 2019 for a plenary session and discussion. This was the first such joint meeting of the Synod and C.I.B. In addition, each of the nineteen monastic Congregations of the Benedictine Confederation made brief reports on their respective annual activities. Abbot Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B. made a presentation on the new motu proprio, Vos estis lux mundi. The Abbot Primate and Abbots President also celebrated Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City on September 12, 2019 together with Benedictine monks and nuns of the area, with a festive supper together at Colegio de Guadalupe. The Synod concluded with a cultural visit to the Pyramids of Teotihuacan on September 13, 2019. Sincere gratitude to Abad Ricardo Tintos Delgado and the monastic community of Tepeyac for the gracious and generous hospitality extended to all the Abbots of the Synod!

Pastoral Visit to Richmond

Abbot President Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B. made a pastoral visit to the monastic community at Mary Mother of the Church in Richmond, Virginia from August 28-September 2, 2019. In his new role as administrator of that monastery, Abbot Elias also attended the Board of Trustees meeting at Benedictine College Preparatory. On behalf of the whole Congregation, he extends his sincere gratitude to Abbot Placid Solari, O.S.B., of Belmont Abbey for his six-years of generous service as administrator in Richmond.

Visit to South Africa

Abbot President Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B. visited the Benedictine monks at St. Benedict’s Abbey in Polokwane, South Africa from August 15-25, 2019. This monastic community was established 100+ years ago by Flemish Benedictine missionaries who also established the Subiaco mission, which includes a primary school, secondary school, parish with eleven stations/chapels serving the people of the area, tech shops and farms. Currently, all the monks are African and members of the Subiaco-Cassinese Benedictine Congregation.

Financial Advisers

Abbot President Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B. announced the appointment of Father Isaiah Frederick, O.S.B. (Collegeville) as chairman of the financial advisers of the Congregation.  Father Isaiah has been a financial adviser since 20016. The Abbot President also appointed Father Luke Turner, O.S.B. (Atchison) as one of the financial advisers.  Grateful appreciation is acknowledged to their respective abbots for sharing them with the Congregation. Due to his increasing responsibilities as Headmaster of Delbarton School, Father Michael Tidd, O.S.B. (Morristown) submitted his resignation from this committee, which was accepted.  The Congregation is also most appreciative for his generous service to our monasteries and their sponsored apostolates during his tenure as a member and chairman of this committee.

CMSM Assembly, San Antonio

The Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) met for the annual assembly from August 5-8, 2019 at the Omni Hotel on Colonnade Blvd. in San Antonio, Texas. This national association of superiors of institutes of consecrated life and societies of apostolic life in the United States held an extraordinary convocation to discern and discuss the collective witness of religious priests and brothers at this time in the life of the Church. An orientation program was held on Monday afternoon, August 5, 2019 for new superiors followed by the opening reception of the assembly for more than 130 major superiors and councilors. On the first full-day of the assembly, a panel of six major superiors and young religious from the Jesuit, Marist and Legionary traditions discussed the core of religious witness and ministry today.  On the second-day of the assemby, Bro. Larry Schatz, F.S.C. and Abbot President Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B. spoke about religious life today and into the future. That day concluded with Mass at the historical Mission San José, presided by Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Silva, M.Sp.S. On the final day of the assembly members of the current CMSM board led a panel discussion on possible planning for the future of this conference in the light of the emerging needs of the major superiors. The assembly also elected new members of the board: Very Rev. Adam Gregory Gonzalez, O.C.D. was elected President of CMSM, Very Rev. Bro. Patrick McNamara, F.M.S. was elected Vice-President of CMSM and Very Rev. Eric Andrews, C.S.P. and Very Rev. Jeffrey Kirch, C.PP.S. were elected members-at-large.