April 21 – Filiation Conversation

Our April Conversation Groups invited us to share thoughts regarding our relationship to Mount Melleray Abbey in County Waterford, Ireland. Mount Melleray founded New Melleray in 1849. The relationship between founding monasteries and their “daughter-houses” goes back to the very beginnings of our Cistercian Order as expressed in the Charity of Charity. These ties remain integral to our Order with provisions for current times and circumstances. We were invited to share our thoughts and experiences of our relationship with Mount Melleray.

We shared our varying experiences of Mount Melleray’s patronage over the years. We also gave thoughts and opinions with regard to this relationship in the future based upon these experiences and the strengths, weaknesses, and future direction of our two communities.

Mount Melleray Abbey, County Waterford, Ireland

from Constitutions and Statutes: of the Monks and Nuns of the Cistercian Order of the Strict Observance
C. 73 – The Character of Filiation

In accordance with the Charter of Charity, Cistercian communities are united by the bond of filiation. Traditionally filiation has its juridic form in the function of the Father Immediate. Paternity and filiation are expressed through mutual assistance and support.

Conversation Groups (CG)

The purpose of the CGs is to provide a forum where the brothers “come together to listen to the Spirit speaking through one another,” to foster skills of good communication that will promote mutual understanding and trust (Gdlns 2), and to provide the superior with the data he needs for taking decisions with foresight and fairness by the brothers humbly and honestly expressing their views (RB 3)