Abbot and Monks

The monks of New Melleray are as diverse as any 30 men you might meet on the sidewalk of a major American city. Some grew up in the Depression Era of the 1930s, others in the tumultuous 60s, and still others in the 1980s era of television sitcoms. Some were farm boys while others were city boys. Some hold advanced university degrees while others never attended college. Some are artistic and others are athletic. Some are “cradle Catholics” while others are converts to Catholicism. Most are from the United States but others were born in Canada, Ireland, Nigeria, and Peru. Yet, you will find each monk’s life led him in varied ways by the grace of God to this place and to this group of brothers. Our community consists of brothers who have made profession in it, novices and others who have been admitted as long-term visitors from other monasteries of our Order and similar special circumstances. Together we seek God and follow Christ under a rule and an abbot in a stable community that is a school of brotherly love.

Together, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, we elect the abbot of our community. As you read the Rule of St. Benedict you will find that, for Benedict, the abbot is believed to hold the place of Christ in the monastery. But Benedict also portrays the abbot as a teacher, a shepherd, a steward, and a father to name a few. In short, the abbot is the member of the community uniquely chosen to lead the community and care for our spiritual and practical needs individually and as a united Body in Christ.