Sister Therese greets Sister Scholastica coming out of chapel

The Elders and the Young

I became a Benedictine when I was fourteen, even though I didn’t know it at the time. I listened with the ear of my heart and put what I learned into practice. I didn’t recognize my Grandma Whitedeer because she had completely transformed after Grandpa died in 1958, when I…

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Willow Tree nativity

Christmas Peace

Only two days until Christmas! I am sure every child is excited with anticipation and a few adults as well! Maybe all of us should hold that same excitement in our hearts, even if it is for a different purpose. As I prepare for the Nativity of our Lord and…

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O Antiphons by Sister Mary Adrian

Come, Lord Jesus

We are nearing the end of the Advent season. Advent, that holy season of the liturgical year which trumpets God’s extravagant love for us, a love beyond reckoning! No matter how broken or seemingly hopeless our world may seem sometimes, the Advent messages are rich with joyous expectation and longing,…

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Chapel Advent wreath with Gospel book

Impelled by Love

The season of Advent is always a welcome and joyous part of our monastic lives. We look forward to all of the rich Old Testament Scripture readings that reawaken our hearts to the desire to be more faithful to our monastic profession: “Behold, the Lord will come, and all his…

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“Let us open our eyes to the light that comes from God, and our ears to the voice from heaven,” says St. Benedict in the Prologue to the Rule. Christ is the Light and the Voice to which we are instructed to open ourselves. This “opening,” while it is something…

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Monreale apse mosaic of Pantocreator

Last Things Last

“First things first” is a common slogan that challenges us to keep our priorities in order. It reminds us to make sure that the most important things in our lives are given “first place,” that is, given priority over other aspects of our lives that are less important. In the…

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Sister Mary Vincent at the organ

A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

In the 1980’s Eugene H. Peterson, American theologian, writer, and poet, wrote a book describing Christian discipleship as “a long obedience in the same direction.” He wanted to stress God’s slow work of transformation in a world obsessed with instant sensations and results. When I first heard Peterson’s description, it…

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Sister Sara Aiden First Profession

Seeing Differently

In 1936, during the Third Reich, a now famous photo was taken of a group of about 100 shipyard workers in Hamburg, Germany. Men are lined-up close together, facing the same direction, their rigid right arms saluting Hitler…with the remarkable exception of one man. His arms are folded against his…

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While camellia

Weeping: A Gift of Grace

Who among us doesn’t weep or at least tear up and grimace at the seeming endless death and disease in our country wreaked by the coronavirus pandemic? There is great sadness and grief at the deaths and suffering caused by COVID-19. Way too many lives in way too many places…

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Fall leaves and monastery chapel


“Never forget!” was a common cry that followed the horrific events of September 11, 2001 because, as human beings, we naturally recognize the power of remembering.  We create holidays and set up memorials so that significant people and events who have made us what we are do not become lost…

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