Mount Saviour Monastery
231 Monastery Rd.
Pine City NY 14871
Dear Friend of Mount Saviour, June 2006
Dedication Day will be Sunday, August 13 with Mass at 10 AM followed by a brunch and music in the Chapter Room around 12:30 PM. Dedication Day is the special occasion when we thank God that we are here and thank all who have helped us be here! It is also a time we invite you to join with us in thanking God for all the blessings and benefits you have received especially in the past year. Fr. James Kelly’s sudden death on Easter morning due to coronary artery disease is still having its sad impact on us along with our joy that he now shares Christ’s glory.
Of all the various issues in our time, one of the most serious is the crisis caused by the sense that our contemporary culture has become so disengaged from the language and symbols of Christianity that it is becoming impossible either to hear or to speak the Christian message in a way that makes sense. The March 2006 issue of New Blackfriars, a review edited by the Dominicans of the English Provinces, treated this subject. Professor Nicholas Lash wrote: “Theology is the responsibility of the Church at large, not just its pastors or, for that matter, its professional theologians. When any Christian seeks to make Christian sense of the tears of things, of his or anyone’s living and dying, of the bewildering and sorrowing complexities of existence, theology is being done.”
Most of us who attended the Word Out of Silence Symposium in 1972 came away convinced that we are most helpful to others the deeper we are into the knowledge and practice of our own tradition. This doesn’t exclude inter-religious dialogue. It is insisting that an ever deeper knowledge and practice of my own tradition and the hope that it gives me will be the way I can be most helpful to others. Our Guest Houses are an invaluable service in this regard and they are always open.
On the First Sunday of May every year we will have a Damasus Winzen Memorial Lecture. This year Fr. Martin Shannon spoke on the theme of Transfiguration in the writings of Fr.Damasus. Next year, it will be Sr. Mary Collins OSB who teaches at Catholic University and St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville MN.
With continued inspiration and the valuable help of Sister Mary Julianne SSMN, we intend to continue having some Topical Retreats. Our recent focus was on Prayer. Last November we considered Reading Scripture as Prayer. In January, we took Centering Prayer or Silent Prayer. In March it was the Prayers of Christ and the Prayers of People in Scripture and in May, The Eucharist as Prayer. We also urge you to spend some time with us in an informal way deepening your friendship and knowledge of Christ and the Holy Spirit. Pray with us as we chant the psalms and listen to scripture – the Divine Office or the Work of God, as it is called. We allow God to work on us, and to spend this kind of time with the Lord, can be even more valuable than a formal Retreat.
October 6-9, we will host the Emmaus Experience V. The theme will be ‘metanoia’ or ‘transformation’. The title: Then Our Eyes Were Opened: Stories of Transformation. Participants will hear about spiritually provoked transformation in the lives of the presenters and reflect on transformation in their own lives. For more information, call Mary Skinner (607) 732 4552 or < email@example.com> or 740 Clark Hollow Rd. Pine City NY 14871. There will be a Danube River Cruise, October 22-31 from Passau to Budapest for Friends of Mount Saviour. If you take the trip, you qualify as a Friend of Mount Saviour. Air fare is free. Call Diane Trevelier toll free 866-831-7769.
When you receive this letter, Br. Thomas Colucci will have made Simple Profession on 9 June. Students taking a three credit undergraduate course on Religion and Community will have completed their time with us. From June 12th to the 25th, some 23 Junior Monks from Benedictine Monasteries in the USA and Mexico will be with us under the guidance of Fr. Cyprian Davis OSB of St Meinrad’s Arachabbey, lecturing in History and Fr. Kevin Seasoltz OSB of St John’s Abbey, lecturing in Liturgy. This is a three year Summer Course designed for monks who have completed their Novitiate and have yet to make Solemn Profession. Different Monasteries host the group each year. It is an opportunity for newer monks to meet their contemporaries and to experience the variety of observances and life in other monasteries
We had 250 lambs this year – or the ewes did. Shearing was again a rich communal event. The orchard and the garden narrowly escaped serious frosts. One doesn’t anticipate gardening joy until the harvest is over.
The book, The Contribution of Monastic Life to the Church and the World, with 13 essays in celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of Mount Saviour, is now available. Monastic life was originally a lay movement. We don’t recommend you make your home a monastery, but the values of monastic life are the basic values of a Christian and human existence. Space available in this letter won’t permit our giving the qualifications
of the lecturers but they are all exceptionally well qualified in their fields. They include Benedictine Abbots and monks, Benedictine women and Sisters of other religious institutes, lay men and women, Catholics and other Christians who have been influenced by Benedictine life. These are essays that can be read and re-read with ever greater profit.
We’d like to send a free copy to everyone but $19.95 will guarantee delivery. The DVD, The Everyday, has been shown on Public TV and will be on the Catholic stations of Scranton and Brooklyn and hopefully other Public TV Stations. It has had excellent reviews and the DVD and VHS are available for $22.95.
We are very grateful for the gifts and sweat equity that enabled us to do some landscaping and to replace the stoves in the monastery kitchen. There are many things that need to be done but there are some things that have to be done soon for which we ask your help. We have a very serious erosion problem just below the West Casa. The USDA will go75%-25% with us so their $8,391 to our $2,734. We can reduce our costs by doing some of the work. We need $5,800 to replace the roof on a house we rent to a couple. The success of our candle project calls for a larger wax melting unit. We would put it together ourselves and have the older smaller unit repaired. This will require an outlay of $1,500 which will soon pay for itself. We are also in the market to replace our 30 year old hay mower which will cost in the neighborhood on $16,000.