Peace and Joy in Community


Our annual summer silent retreat is underway, and we are going to share it with you.

You can make this retreat at home, if you wish, by reading each reflection and taking time to reflect, journal, sit in silence or walk quietly through a beautiful place.

By Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB

Living in community is the best counterweight against individualism in our society today.

And individualism – the Me-First attitude – exacts a high toll on those who pursue it relentlessly. Continue Reading

Everyday Saints


By Sister Marianne Burkhard, OSB

As we celebrated All Saints (both the officially known and all the unknown ones) Day on Sunday, I find myself thinking of those everyday saints – with a small “s” – we have known along our way.

These are people who have shared their faith with us, touched us in a special way by being ‘the presence of God’ in a particular moment when that presence of God was needed for support or as stimulus for further spiritual growth. Continue Reading

Your Gifts

Stefanie posted two great prayers this week regarding discernment (in “A Time to Plant,” below). What struck me was each prayer referred to knowing your gifts and how best to use them in service of God and God’s People. That is the crux of discernment!

Here’s what I mean: While our Benedictine community has the gift of leading a rhythmic life of prayer and work, other communities are quite different. Many emphasize work more than living in community and sharing prayer. Some are cloistered and emphasize prayer over work. Our community values living together at the monastery, following a balanced life of prayer and work. Other communities allow Sisters to live wherever their jobs take them, often living alone or in small groups.

Do your gifts emphasize prayer, community and ministry? If so, visit our Benedictine community! If your gift is to do ministry without such an emphasis on life and prayer in community, an Apostolic community may be your match.

Know yourself, your gifts and how you are called to use them in your life. Try using Stefanie’s prayers as a guide to your reflection.

Life in Community

A key Benedictine value is Community Living. We become who we are through our relationships with others. As Benedictine Sisters, we promise stability, which is crucial to community life. It means “to cultivate rootedness and a shared sense of mission.” Benedict said, “Stand firm in your promises.” He also said, “Your way of acting should be different from the world’s way; the love of Christ must come before all else. … Never give a hollow greeting of peace or turn away when someone needs your love.”