Jan 29 – A Postulant Present

God has given us the present of a Postulant. Those of you who join us regularly might have noticed the departure of our observer shortly after Christmas. We require an observer to depart from the community at the conclusion of his observership and spend at least a month away from the community discerning his vocation. At the conclusion of his time of discernment our new Postulant, an ordained diocesan priest from Pennsylvania, contacted our vocation director and requested to be accepted as a Postulant. With the approval of our Formation Council, we gladly welcomed him back today.

Postulancy at New Melleray is the first step of acceptance into the community for a man who feels God is calling him to monastic life. He has experienced monastic life at New Melleray firsthand and has heard God’s call to continue the journey toward monastic life. For our part, we agree that positive indications for a vocation were shown during his observership. At this stage, though, he is not bound by any sort of commitment and is free to terminate his postulancy at any time, the Postulant is considered a member of the community. With the guidance of the Novice Director, the Postulant is progressively initiated into Cistercian monastic life as lived at New Melleray. Brothers will accompany him in the reading of and reflection on select biblical and patristic texts and introduce him to the foundations of Christian spirituality and maturity. The postulancy at New Melleray lasts from six to twelve months. During this time he will discern with the abbot and the Novice Director if God is calling him to continue his integration into the community as a Novice.

Are you interested in monastic life?

Visit our website to learn more about Stages of Growth in Cistercian Monastic Life at New Melleray. or download our Vocation Brochure.  

Would you like to learn more about the process of discerning God’s call and how we can help you hear His call?

Contact our vocation director to discuss how God is challenging you to seek Him in religious life.

 vocationdirector@newmelleray.org or 563.588.2319 x199 

Does a monastic life at New Melleray capture your heart and imagination?

Consider attending a Come Away Weekend or spending time in our Monastic Center Program to start down the way to God in monastic life.  


from Constitutions and Statutes of the Monks and Nuns of the Cistercian Order of the Strict Observance:
C.46: Admission of Brothers

1 – Newcomers to monastic life . . . are to be received as brothers only if they manifest the spiritual attitude needed for monastic life and give evidence of adequate maturity and health. When these qualities are present their desire to embrace this life can be recognized as an indication of God’s call and of their intention of truly seeking God with all their heart. 

ST 46.1.A – The abbot is to determine with the master of novices the time that the postulants spend with the brothers before canonically beginning the novitiate. Postulants are initiated into the spiritual disciplines of the Order in a manner appropriate to them at this stage.