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Friday, 28 December 2012

Pray for vocations, please

Colwich Abbey Benedictines

I hope to do a series on art and beauty, which I promised over a week ago, but I am bogged down mentally with the ideas of purification and perfection. I have seven diaries from being in the Monastery, which I cannot get to at this time, as I have been so busy. However, I can hopefully in the New Year get back on track.

Vacations seem to get more complicated and less relaxing. Perhaps it is because of my peripatetic lifestyle. But, writing for me is the product of hours of prayer and reading and I find the interaction with lovely guests is good, but not conducive to reflection.

One of the problems with the monasteries I have visited over the last two years is that the number of nuns is too small to accommodate the number of visitors and retreatants. The Benedictine Rule demands hospitality for anyone who drops in and I think that sometimes some of the laity do not realize that seven nuns, or five active ones and two old ones cannot take care of the needs. Bernard of Clairvaux had seven-hundred monks and lay brothers at the peak of the monastery's history, which allows for a steady stream of visitors.

We need more vocations to the religious life. There are two young ones in the Irish monastery, but they are from Nigeria. The newest one in London is from an African country as well.

Pray for vocations for monks, nuns and sisters.

We shall see monasteries closing in Europe.