Glory to God in the highest and peace to his people on earth!
When we sing these words from the Gospel of St Luke, are we giving
expression to what is true or is it wishful thinking? How can we tell
the difference so that we can move into the future with confidence?
It seems that many people think the Scriptures are directed to professionals:
the clergy and those in religious life. Whereas,
from the earliest times, they were read and commented on at worship services
in private homes to a wide variety of people. This is what we read
in the Book of Acts of the Apostles and the Epistles of St. Paul. Then,
in the course of time, the Gospels and Epistles were written and collected
as we know them now. They are included in our worship services for
the instruction and consolation of the ordinary lay person. Unfortunately
they have become the prerogative of scholars and religious so most Catholics
are scared away from them. “Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance
of Christ” according to St. Jerome. That means the Risen Christ is
unable to encounter us as God intends and we remain unaware and unconvinced
of the depth of God’s love for us. Jesus’ reproach of the Sadducees
in Mt. 2,29: "You do not know the scriptures” wasn’t with reference to the
words - they had them memorized! They had neither grasped the
meaning God intended by the words nor allowed the change of heart the words
were to bring about.
I think all of us can identify with the Ethiopian whom the Deacon Philip
asked if he understood what he was reading. (Acts of the Apostles 8, 27-40).
The man replied: “How can I unless someone explains it to me.”
All of us do need some help from competent specialists in Scripture.
Two recent books by Fr. Demetrius Dumm OSB are a great help towards an encounter
with Christ through knowledge of the scriptures. His most recent book:
Praying the Scriptures is 182 pages and less than ten dollars. His
earlier: Flowers in the Desert: A Spirituality of the Bible is 168 pages and
four dollars more. Remember that having read a book, we are in a better
position to understand it when we read it the second or third or fourth time.
What better gift at Christmas than the gift of ourselves and our time
pondering the scriptures and relating them to our present life as did Mary
“keeping all these things and reflecting them in her heart.” (Lk 2,19).
a young lawyer from Columbia spent a month with us
from 17 June until 18 July. We didn’t have the Summer Program this
year in order to give more time to the Novices. Marco wanted to deepen
his Catholic faith and commitment through study and work and it turned out
splendidly for all of us. The size and quality of the apples was due
to a number of secondary causes under God. Marco was close to the first
of the secondary causes and we are very grateful for his presence among us.
Br. Elias Ippolito
of New Skete Monastery in Cambridge NY visited
us from 25 June until 23 July. We have known the New Skete Community
since way back in Fr. Damasus’ time. Br Elias did wonders in the kitchen.
He also hit a bear at the Hendy Creek Market. I’m not clear whether
it was in the check out line or in the parking lot. It has been a great
topic of conversation so accuracy has gone all to pieces. Br Elias
and the bear are both in one piece - or two pieces.
Fr. Matthew Regan
died June 7th in California and was buried here
June 27th. It occasioned a wonderful family reunion and at the Mass his nieces
carried the music to new heights. The Chapel was full of his friends
and it was very fitting that he rest here where he began his monastic life.
Fr. Hilary Hayden OSB
of St. Anselm’s Abbey in Washington DC where
Fr. Matthew was finally professed and ordained represented that community.
on small communities was held here with great
success 1-6 July. A fuller report is in this Chronicle and also news
of the next gathering.
Power outage 21-23 July
. Even our generator gave out so things
were really quiet. This local power failure was three weeks before
the international one. We were only without power for three hours in
Weston Priory 50th Anniversary
|Br. Luke died on 26 July at the age of 93
and five months. He was quite chipper that morning and was talking
in Latin. Fr. Basil De Pinto expressed the sentiments of so many:
“…this incredibly kind, loving man. Who of us who knew him were not
touched by his generosity of spirit and his unfailing willingness to extend
a helping hand, give a gentle word. We certainly cannot doubt that
he has heard the word of the Saviour: ‘Well done, thou good and faithful
servant; enter into the joy of your Lord.”’ Because of his work in
the Book Shop, Br. Luke was usually to be found at the front desk when people
arrived. So he gave the first and lasting impression of the community
and our life. It was one of his many gifts to us and to the guests
and visitors that can hardly be replaced.
On October 18th, the Feast of St. Luke, a Memorial Mass was celebrated
for Br. Luke in Toronto. Br. Pierre and Fr. Martin were warmly received
by Br. Luke’s family and a host of friends. We are so grateful to be
included in the richness of the Pape family life.
Br. Luke & Br. Pierre on July 4th, 2003
of acceptance into the Diocese of
Burlington was wonderfully celebrated on August 12th. Fr. Martin represented
Mount Saviour. The relationship of our communities is grounded in
that of our founders, Damasus Winzen and Leo Rudlof and the gift of their
spirits and the Spirit for which we are eternally grateful.
Dedication Day was 17 August
. The Chapel was full and things
went swimmingly. Clare Smock again provided the program of music.
It is amazing how much musical talent exists in our area and how much Clare
is able to garner each year. This years the artists gave us an exceptional
Joseph Amendola and Christopher Kosciuk
began their novitiate
13 September. Joseph kept his baptismal name and Christopher took Adelard
which was his grandfather’s name and that of a ninth century abbot of Corbie
in Picardy. Please accompany them during this year with your prayers.
, who teaches Drama at Corning Community College, has
been helping us with our reading the last two months. Since we have
reading during the noon and evening meals, the six prayer services each
day and the Epistles and Gospels at Mass, it helps if we do it so we edify
the hearers as St. Benedict insists. Reading aloud declined with the
invention of the radio and may disappear altogether with the coming of the
electronic era. It is a blessing to have Clare’s help in reviving
this lost art form.
Rick and Mary Canali
, owners of The Palms Restaurant invited the
community to a ‘meal out’ on 21st of September. It was a delightful
event and for us a reminder that God feeds the worlds’ billions every day;
that God fed the Hebrew slaves as they journeyed to freedom through the
wilderness, and that Jesus had meals with his disciples and many others
and especially at his Last Supper which we share with him in our day at
Orchard and Garden Report
| Fr. Jerome Hall S.J. gave the first of the
Damasus Winzen Memorial Lectures on 28 September. He spoke on The Presence
of Christ in Our Worship to over 80 people gathered in St. Joseph’s Guest
House. It was a worthy beginning to what we hope will be an annual event
and a deepening of our understanding and involvement in the mystery we celebrate
as we worship with Christ in the Spirit. Fr. Jerome taught at the Gregorian
University in Rome from 1997 until 2002 and now is adjunct professor in
the School of Theology and Religious Studies at Catholic University of America.
He is the author of We Have the Mind of Christ: The Holy Spirit and Liturgical
Memory in the Thought of Edward Kilmartin, a Pueblo Book published by Liturgical
Press, Collegeville MN.
Fr. Gerard Sloyan will be our speaker this spring. The
date is not yet determined.
22 - 26 October, Br. Bruno visited Weston Priory to share our experience
with sheep and to learn from as well as encourage their recent farming efforts.
He made five trips to the auction in Hackensack N.J. with lambs for Ramadan.
24 - 26 October, Fr. Martin and Br. Gabriel were invited by Fr.
Stephen Honeygosky OSB of Catholic Campus Ministry at Penn State to help
facilitate a conference on the present tendency to separate Religion and
Spirituality. Over 400 people attended and it was beautifully organized
and carried out. Laszlo and Linda Ivanitz were our hosts for the two
nights we were there.
17-18 November. Fr. Martin attended the Regional Meeting
of the Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) and hosted by the Maryknoll
Fathers and Brothers. The meeting dealt with the sexual abuse problem
especially as it effects minors. This will be a major focus of the
CMSM for the next two years and it was certainly an auspicious beginning.
Fr. Jerome Hall with his parents an Br. Gabriel
2003 goes into the record books as our largest apple crop ever at over
16,000 lbs. Some individual trees had over 800 lbs. of fruit on them!
Needless to say there was a lot of picking, sorting and processing to do.
Special thanks go to Brs. William, Joseph and Adelard and to all the guests
who helped with all the work. An especial thanks goes to the group
of men that came with Joe Manzi from Rocky Point, Long Island, who helped
press over 400 gallons of cider out of our 600 gallons total. Other
notable successes this year include peaches, plums, strawberries (135 lbs!)
and our indoor fig trees that provided us with delicious fruit from August
to October. In addition, our organic garden yielded 2,500 lbs. of produce
to top off a very fruitful growing season. We are currently expanding
the garden but have a terrific crop of rocks, which seem to grow best of all,
to get rid of first. Once accomplished, we will attempt home-grown sweet
corn. Don't tell the raccoons! The picture shows Br. John with
William O'Byrne , a guest from Ireland, and Fr. Michael Messner from Harrisburg,
"An Emmaus Experience"
brought an ecumenical group of thirty Christian
men and women to Mount Saviour in early July for six days of prayer, study
and dialogue on vital forms of Christian community in the modern world.
Community living, with shared meals and household tasks, was an essential
part of the experience, as was participation in the liturgical life of the
monastic community. Each morning, workshops on Centering Prayer and
Meditation were offered. Prior Martin Boler, OSB, Fathers James Kelly,
OSB and James Cronin, OSB, as well as various theologians, pastors and professors
offered their reflections and led discussions and workshops on models of
Christian community, past and present. In one session, representatives
of contemporary Christian communities, including the Ithaca Catholic Worker,
Wood Hath Hope, the Company of Kirkridge, and Peaceweavers, described their
missions. Discussions centered on participants' experience of Christian
community and on the evolving role of small Christian communities in the church
today. A particular theme of the conference was the power of small
intentional communities to enrich Christian life and lead to change and ecumenical
unity in the wider church.
A Winter Gathering
Mount Saviour Monastery will be the site of the second Emmaus Experience
on January 16-19, 2004. Persons wishing to participate in this retreat,
as well as participants from the Summer '03 Emmaus Experience, are most welcome.
Participants will explore together, in presentations, group discussions,
and in prayer, the Emmaus story as told in Luke 24:13-36. The gathered
community will seek to understand its meaning for them today and ways in
which they can live out the challenge of this Gospel together.
For more information and/or a registration form, contact:
Sheep May Safely Graze
. A weekend Retreat for Knitters at
Mount Saviour Monastery
February 6-8, 2004. On receipt of your registration we will send
you a skein of Mount Saviour yarn. We ask you to add your own wool
to this skein and make a child’s sweater for sale in the monastery bookstore.
Meditations will be given by Penny Byham, a Mount Saviour Oblate from NY
City who has been leading parish retreats here for the past five years.
She is also an avid knitter, a designer of sweaters, a devoted grandmother
and Director of Professional Development for Citigroup’s Private Bank.
Cost: $175, including meals lodging. $100 for day guests.
Limited to 25 overnight guests and 10 day guests. Address: Knitters’
Retreat c/o Penelope Byham, 160 W. 77th St., Apt 3B NYC, NY 10024. Checks
to be made out to Mount Saviour Monastery. Questions: Please e-mail <
Please remember us in prayer and, if possible,
also in your estate planning and will. Our legal title is -
The Benedictine Foundation of
New York State.
Mount Saviour Monastery
231 Monastery Rd.
Pine City NY 14871-9787
Phone: (607) 734-1688
Fax: (607) 734-1689