Founding & Growth

Some reminiscences from the founder, Fr. Cassian:


After several years of preparation, the monastery was founded in Rome on September 3, 1998. For two years we lived in a rented novitiate building, which was really just a glorified apartment in which one room had been changed into a chapel. I vividly remember the barking dogs under the chapel window. Since there wasn’t enough room for all of us, we renovated the garage and I moved in there. We were poor, but zealous and on fire with the monastic ideal. Two years later, toward the end of the Great Jubilee Year, after searching vainly for a more suitable place to live, we were offered the possibility of moving to Norcia, the birthplace of St. Benedict. Here we were, a community with no monastery; while Norcia had an empty monastery but no community. After many negotiations involving abbots and bishops and cardinals, the deal was made. We rented a van and moved our few belongings, to be welcomed with huge enthusiasm by the clergy of the diocese and the people of the town, First Vespers of the First Sunday of Advent, in the Jubilee Year 2000. Since then we’ve tripled in size, and we’re starting to run out of room…

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