Abbot Primate Gregory Polan, O.S.B., welcomed abbots, abbesses, monks, nuns, oblates, teachers and students to Rome for the 125th anniversary celebration of the foundation of the Benedictine Confederation by Pope Leo XIII with his brief Summum semper on July 12, 1893. The late Archabbot Boniface Wimmer, O.S.B. (Latrobe) , first American abbot and founder of our monastic congregation, was among those first abbots to support this new initiative to unite the various monastic congregations into a single Confederation on the Aventine hill.
This jubilee celebration included a private papal audience on April 19, 2018 in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace. The following day, Abbot Jeremy Driscoll, O.S.B. (Mt. Angel) gave a paper on sapiential theology in the Benedictine tradition. The festivities concluded with a solemn Pontifical Mass, presided by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State, at the Basilica S. Anselmo on the Aventine hill, for the solemnity of St. Anselm, April 21, 2018. Among the invited dignitaries were Ambassadors to the Holy See, Superiors General and several Abbots President of the Benedictine Confederation, including our own Abbot President Elias Lorenzo, O.S.B.
In his role as President of the International Commission on Benedictine Education, Abbot Elias led a small delegation of twenty teachers and students from our secondary schools in Chile, England, Germany, USA and South Africa to join the jubilee activities. Further highlights for these teachers and students included pilgrimages to Subiaco and Montecassino, and visits to the papal basilicas and catacombs of Rome.