May 2010

Dear Friends of Mount Saviour


Greetings to all our oblates and friends!   Our greatest joy and happiness is the celebration of the Paschal feast with it's fifty day extension. It occurs together with Spring every year as the world around  joins with us to celebrate THE RESURREC-TION to NEW LIFE. The sun rises to its  highest point spreading warmth over the cold earth which responds with blossoms, fresh vegetation all over, cheerful song birds calling to each other, new life being born among the sheep; orchards and gardens sprouting cheerful blossoms and welcoming the bees to spread the pollen around and fill their hives with honey; bright colors and pleasant aromas abound. All this accompanying our "Alleluias" to the Risen Lord: "He is risen! He is alive! He has overcome death, sin and evil, hatred and envy.  Many guests come at this time to quietly absorb some of the peace; to be inspired; to appreciate the Author of it all and be renewed in Faith, Hope and Love


Meanwhile life goes on; the winter was mild, comparatively. We were by-passed by most of the storms whether from the East or West.  And, while confined, somewhat, to be indoors more than out we were sustained by a series of lectures arranged by The Friends of Mount Saviour.  They treated themes from the Rule of St. Benedict for everyday life.  Giovina Caroscio spoke about "Listening to God and one Another" enriched by her years of study and ministry in Catholic Social Service in the diocese of Rochester and New York State.  She was followed by Sr. Donald Corcoran,  Benedictine-Camaldolese Nun from nearby Transfiguration Monastery in Windsor,NY.  Sr. Donald is in demand as lecturer in Theology and Religious Life throughout the country. She spoke about Conversion of Life and Prayer in the Rule and as lived in monasteries and in the lives of many seekers of God.  And, finally, the theme of Hospitality in the Rule of Benedict and very much emphasized by our own Fr. Damasus, and by our own Prior Emeritus, Fr. Martin Boler.


Coming next will be the Annual Damasus Winzen Lecture on May 2nd. The speaker   will be Dr. Richard Galliardetz, theologian and professor at the University of Toledo in Ohio. He will speak to us and our guests and friends at 10:30am, after the Community Mass, in St. Joseph's Guest House. We look forward to this event and are reminded of our revered founder, Fr. Damasus, who was filled with the knowledge and love of God, Divine Agape, and delighted to share this gift with eager listeners.


The gift of 'Life' is a major and delightful event of this season as the new lambs begin to arrive.  Br. Pierre, our shepherd, was ready and kept busy as many ewes presented him with twins to be welcomed and tagged and within a few hours turned out to fresh green pasture on the picturesque hillside.  Many visitors come to behold this wonderful scene and give glory to God.


We are asked by friends: "What do you need?"  After a little reflection the answer comes: " Keener awareness of the Divine Presence and then deeper communion with the Father, through the Son, in the Holy Spirit. After that, some new genuine Seekers of God for this House of Prayer.  May the Lord grant us this precious gift. After that, some helpers with the "nuts and bolts" things of everyday life, such as: replacing an aging water pipe line, now some 40-50 years old, which comes down from the well at the highest point of our hill. It collapsed in two or three places during the winter months and now is the time to dig it up and replace it, no small little project!  In another area, a generous friend is already helping to restore and improve our choir books which are used every day by both monks and guests. There are also180 talks by  Rev.Father Damasus recorded on reel to reel tapes which are now old and deteriorating and we wish to preserve by transferring them to Compact Discs (CDs), approximately 1050 hrs. of valuable material. The approximate cost will be about $20,000.


Our annual "D" Day (Dedication Day) celebration will occur this year on Sunday, August 15th with the Holy Eucharist at 10 (instead the usual 9) o'clock, followed by a delicious brunch and  musical entertainment, always a delightful finale.


Since our last letter, a very dear and devoted friend and oblate has left us to be with the Lord, namely, Douglas Gravel,  who, together with Maria his wife, guided our premier oblate group in New York City for several years and was a faithful promotor of "Mount Saviour" and all our interests and general welfare.   May he rest in the Peace of Christ.


                                                                                    Fr. James Cronen, osb                                                             





Greetings as we approach the feast of Pentecost!


 Let us look at the first book of Holy Scripture, Genesis, Chapter One: 26-27.

"Let us make the human in our image, after our likeness. Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea," etc..  God's project in creating us was to give us a share in God's

own life and relationship.  Jesus was incarnate by the Holy Spirit - so able to give the apostles and others the Holy Spirit.  Our feast of Pentecost celebrates the fulfilment of God's Project in creating us to share God's divine life. We "know" this but do we believe it and do we want to share God's life?  St. Paul writes that our parents tried to grasp this gift. Satin convinced them they could not only be like God- they could be God! It is a free gift of God's love.  Even though we share God's divine life through the Holy Spirit  we need to ask for this gift that we may experience it in our life while on earth. I encourage you to read chapters 14,15,16 & 17 in St. John's Gospel - at least chapter 17: 20-26 that ends: "I not only pray for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word so that they may all be one as you, Father, are in me and I in you; that they may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me....I made known to them your name and I will make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them and I in them"