Br. James Cronen celebrated 50 years of monastic Profession. The community was served a "heavenly banquet" prepared by Barbara Reiter from Syracuse with the help of her sister, Claire Johnson and Mary Skinner. The ambiance was similar to the Titanic dining hall. Some thought that it was a repeat of Babette's Feast. The picture shows Br. Luke, Br. Alexis, Br. Bruno, Fr. Martin, Br. James Cronen and Br. Gabriel.
Profession: Br. William
Br. William (Bill) Uiting was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1940. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history in 1962 and taught in a high school for a few years. In 1965, he attended Michigan State University in East Lansing for a Master degree. He took managerial duties for large department stores. On business trips, he got acquainted with the Catholic Workers in New York City. In 1994, he joined the Peter Morin Farm. After discovering Mount Saviour in a book on monasteries and sanctuaries, he came to visit several times and asked to join. His simple profession was a private ceremony on Sept. 14th.
Profession: Br. Raphael
On the feast of the Archangels, Br. Raphael (Thomas) Maley made his solemn vows in front of the community and 75 friends and relatives. Fr. Martin, Prior, gave the following homily.
"For several days last week Br Raphael and I gave each other a kind of Directed Retreat...Formally, I was the giver, but as any real giver knows, no matter how much you give, you always receive more in return. That is one way of God revealing the Divine Agape God's love which reaches out to us that we might learn to share the mystery of Divine life. That is why St. Benedict says if one of the brothers, by the use of his God-given talents, thinks he is conferring a benefit on the Brotherhood...take his job away from him until he learns the origin and flow of the life and talents in him - they come from God and are a gift to him to be enjoyed and used for the benefit of others as well as himself.
Br Raphael and I spoke about Baptism - Monastic profession can be spoken of as a 2nd. Baptism. It is intended to mean taking seriously the baptismal reality received from the one abiding baptism given by Christ.
Baptism is a 'new newness' an unrepeatable originality or uniqueness
whose origin and meaning are hidden in God. Baptism as a Sacramental Mystery
is not primarily an expression of a truth beyond our reason, but a divine
reality, hidden and yet communicated through the word and through sacramental
action. It is not called a 'mystery' because it is beyond our understanding,
but because as an act of divine compassion it transcends our entire existence
-and especially in our condition of alienation from God. The mystery of
God becomes the mystery of Christ who leaves the Father and comes into
the world and then leaves the world to return to the Father to take part
in God's new creation -the new newness. Living out our Baptism doesn't
mean simply accepting Christ's teaching or even receiving his grace but
RE-LIVING his Mystery...ascendinq to God the way he descended to us and
returned to the Father.(Humility as Benedict shows us).
The texts of St. Paul: To walk in the newness of life: to serve in newness of spirit. Whoever is in Christ is a new creation-the old things have passed away; behold new things have come: neither circumcision or uncircumcision mean anything, but only a new creation! Etch's I will out a new spirit within you. Christ's "Behold I make all things new ". Finally "the word of God which is now at work in you who believe. This is the mystery of Christ's baptism into which we are plunged -this is Br. Raphael's Life-Profession which begins to take him and us out of our intellectual and moral self-complacency to yield to the saving power of God's love.
Baptism is only the beginning of finding the word of God in our heart
not so much by introspection as by compunction. The inward movement of
compunction is not a hiding of one's self, but the liberation of the self
which occurs in the depth of our being and lets us out of ourselves FROM
THE INSIDE. Liberation from concentration on ourselves is the beginning
of a conversion -a real transfiguration.
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