monks02

Vocations

In every age, God has raised men and women that feel the call of Christ to be his disciples, and they have responded in a radical form, abandoning the comforts of friends and family in order to dedicate themselves completely to the Lord. The radical nature of this way of life finds a corresponding harmony of the human heart that is “restless until we rest in you”, as St. Augustine says. When the lord walked upon this earth and gathered around him disciples that wanted to be with him, to live with him, to suffer with him — always. A monk ardently desires to follow the Lord in the same way.

 
St. Benedict sums up the entire vocation of a monk with two simple words, Seeking God. (RB 58) When all is said and done, a monk is one who seeks God. According to our great founder of coenobitism, a monk must also love the Divine Office, be willing to accept trials, and obey. These four characteristics (seeking God, obedience, love of the Divine Office, and accepting trials) make up the essential of a monastic vocation, which are encompassed in the three vows every monk professes: Obedience, Stability, and Conversion of Life.

 

Discernment

 

Discernment is the process of applying the objective criteria of a monastic vocation, to the interior longings of man whose future is still not planned. Practicing Catholics, age 20-35, are invited to come for a short visit of two or three weeks to consider monastic life.

 

Steps of formation

 

A consecration to God once made, should not be broken. So the monastery provides a long process of formation to purify motives and move the soul towards God. An observership of three months and a postulancy of nine months precede a one-year novitiate. Then, simple profession of three years is made before solemn profession, the monk’s total consecration.

 

Priesthood

 

To some monks the call to priesthood is also given, a call to assist the Abbot in his paternal care of the monk, to act as Alter Christus in the Liturgical Sacrifice of the Mass, and to assist in the pastoral activities of the monastery.

 
 
 
 

For Vocation Inquiries please include some brief information about yourself and send your inquiry to the Vocations Director at vocations@osbnorcia.org.