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Author Topic: New WRO Monastery in Romanian Archdiocese  (Read 3280 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: June 23, 2010, 02:28:14 PM »

SOUTHBRIDGE – On Sunday, June 20th the parish community of St. Michael Orthodox Christian Church voted to found the St. Columba of Iona Orthodox Monastery on the grounds of the church.

For more than a year, Fr. Peter Preble, the pastor of the parish, has been working to find suitable property to found the monastery. One of the parishioners, Mr. Thomas Andrea, suggested that the monastery be founded at St. Michael’s. “It is funny how you can be looking for something and the answer to the question is right under your nose the entire time” said Fr. Peter. “We have been looking at all sorts of property to include the former Camp Bement in Charlton, Massachusetts but God had other plans.” That plan was the property on Romanian Ave in Southbridge.

The monastery will be housed in the present rectory and use the church and the grounds as well as a newly established chapel for services. A services schedule will be published soon but will include daily services as well as a lecture series that will begin in the fall.

Fr. Peter said, “monasticism has a long tradition in the Orthodox Church and we have been without a monastic presence in this area for far too long. The Church is at it’s best when the local church and the monastery work together for the betterment of the world.”

The new monastery has as it’s patron the 6th century Scottish St. Columba of Iona. Know in the Orthodox Church as Our Father Among the Saints Columba, Enlightener of Scotland. He was chosen due to his remarkable history of founding monasteries and his work with the poor. “We hope to emulate his life and work right here in Southern Worcester County. Monasteries are places of prayer and solitude but also or work” said Fr. Peter. “We need to be active in the word to live out the Gospel of Jesus Christ to love out neighbor as ourselves.”

For centuries Monastic Communities have been an integral part of the Orthodox Christian Tradition and life. Today monasticism remains an important and vital part of the Orthodox Christian faith. The focus of monasticism is on theosis, the process becoming more like God, of perfection to which every Christian is called.

Historically monasteries were also centers of learning, evangelization and Church planting. In the Celtic lands monasteries were responsible for preservation of the culture and for large collections of the written word as well as liturgical art. Many believe that the Book of Kells was created at the monastery on the Isle of Iona off the coast of Scotland. The Book of Kells is an illuminated manuscript in Latin, containing the four Gospels of the New Testament. It is a masterwork of Western calligraphy and represents the pinnacle of Insular illumination. It is also widely regarded as Ireland’s finest national treasure – a true work representing Orthodox Christianity.

In 563 St. Columba founded the monastery on the Island of Iona the smallest of the islands in the Inner Hebrides of Scotland. St. Columba and 12 companions founded the monastery and then set out on the conversion of pagan Scotland. In this day and age steady rise of secular materialism, totalitarianism and radical Islam there is a greater than ever need for more Monastic Communities here in the United States. It is also the vision of the monastic foundation to create an Orthodox Center for Church Growth and Evangelism; an academic and practical mission to train and raise up men and women who are called and have a vision for Orthodox evangelism, church growth and the establishment of new Orthodox parishes throughout New England and broader United States. This is very much in keeping with the biblical mandate to “go and make disciples of all nations…” (Matt.28:19ff) and very same mission that St. Columba of Iona embarked on many centuries ago.

St. Columba of Iona Monastery exists to make visible the Kingdom of God to the world; is dedicated to a life of prayer, worship, work and service of others; committed to support local Orthodox Parishes in their evangelistic and missionary outreach to the broader community; is set apart as a place of prayer, contemplation, spiritual direction, formation and renewal; a holy place firmly rooted in the sacramental life of the Church.

The Monastery is a pan Orthodox and duel Ritual (both eastern and western rite) and is under the Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese in the Americas. The monastery also has a blessing from His Eminence Metropolitan Philip of the Antiochian Archdiocese.
Anyone interested in exploring a monastic vocation at the new monastery should be in contact with Fr. Peter at priest@stmichaelorth.org more information can be found on the monastery website: www.stcolumbamonastery.org.

http://www.aoiusa.org/blog/2010/06/new-monastery-founded/#more-7040
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« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2010, 02:35:49 PM »

Wow! Good news. Thanks for sharing this!
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« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2010, 02:52:23 PM »

COOL!
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« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2010, 03:54:50 PM »

What "western rite" shall they use?
The Anglican one?
I'm not aware of that being lawful in the Romanian Church.
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« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2010, 04:11:56 PM »

Good op.  Thanks for posting
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« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2010, 04:58:31 PM »

What "western rite" shall they use?
The Anglican one?
I'm not aware of that being lawful in the Romanian Church.

Maybe the St. Herman's they used in France? That would be cool.

As they have support from Met. Philip I suppose they won't be different from the AWRV.

BTW How many Monks are there?
« Last Edit: June 23, 2010, 05:02:40 PM by mike » Logged
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2010, 09:10:14 PM »

BTW How many Monks are there?

One, who is also the abbot, a fire chaplain, the parish priest, and a broadcaster on the local radio station.
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« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2010, 09:48:18 PM »

With one monk this is hardly a monastery.
Perhaps a cell would be a more appropriate name.
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« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2010, 10:01:55 PM »

With one monk this is hardly a monastery.
Perhaps a cell would be a more appropriate name.

Monos = One. So perhaps this "Mona"stary is more mono than the others?  Wink
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« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2010, 10:11:21 PM »

yeah Grin
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ialmisry
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« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2010, 10:35:50 PM »

With one monk this is hardly a monastery.
Perhaps a cell would be a more appropriate name.
Well, you are the nominalist.  Reading the Life of St. Anthony by St. Athanasius, though
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/basis/vita-antony.html
it seems St. Anthony started out similarly.
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ialmisry
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« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2010, 10:55:16 PM »

The Church has a great youtube answering the question "Are you saved?"
http://www.stmichaelorth.org/

Interesting, the congregation seems to have been Vlachs and Aromanians.
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« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2010, 01:16:27 AM »

Well, he's not St Anthony (yet, at least), is he?
Plus, the title of the thread is misleading: this is a bi-ritual cell/monk.
Hopefully one day the enterprise will become an actual monastic community.
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« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2010, 07:31:51 AM »

Well, he's not St Anthony (yet, at least), is he?

I do not know. Do you?

Quote
Plus, the title of the thread is misleading: this is a bi-ritual cell/monk.

All WRO are bi-ritual (at least in the Antiochian archdiocese).  Allowing WRO, giving the hostility to it, is WRO.

Quote
Hopefully one day the enterprise will become an actual monastic community.
How is that nominally defined?
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« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2010, 09:31:14 AM »

I don't think anyone can attempt a minimal definition.

For example,no matter how articulately or passionately one tries to describe Orthodox monastic life and ethos to a Roman Catholic, he will not grasp it.  Never having experienced it he will relate it to the forms of Roman Catholic monastic life with which he is familiar.  Fair enough, but his paradigms of monastic life simply won't meld with Orthodox monastic life and he is left with an impoverished understanding.

There is really only one way to develop an understanding - by experiencing life in a monastery.

Some books are of course useful for helping people understand.  There is Robinson's little book "Monasticism in the Orthodox Churches" which was written by an Anglican but it is still valuable.  Somewhere on Google books you can download it in .pdf.  If someone finds the link, can they please post it.

Another excellent book is Philip Sherrard's "Athos: The Holy Mountain"

Maybe others will recommend other books.

Monks of Optina Monastery


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« Reply #15 on: June 24, 2010, 10:59:39 AM »

Father Preble has a Blog about the monastery

http://www.frpeterpreble.com/2010/02/st-columba-of-iona-orthodox-monastery.html
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« Reply #16 on: June 24, 2010, 11:10:54 AM »

I don't think anyone can attempt a minimal definition.

For example,no matter how articulately or passionately one tries to describe Orthodox monastic life and ethos to a Roman Catholic, he will not grasp it.  Never having experienced it he will relate it to the forms of Roman Catholic monastic life with which he is familiar.  Fair enough, but his paradigms of monastic life simply won't meld with Orthodox monastic life and he is left with an impoverished understanding.

There is really only one way to develop an understanding - by experiencing life in a monastery.

Some books are of course useful for helping people understand.  There is Robinson's little book "Monasticism in the Orthodox Churches" which was written by an Anglican but it is still valuable.  Somewhere on Google books you can download it in .pdf.  If someone finds the link, can they please post it.

Another excellent book is Philip Sherrard's "Athos: The Holy Mountain"

Maybe others will recommend other books.

Monks of Optina Monastery




Father,
Can you possibly try and share someof the differences with me?
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« Reply #17 on: June 24, 2010, 11:17:23 AM »

I don't think anyone can attempt a minimal definition.

For example,no matter how articulately or passionately one tries to describe Orthodox monastic life and ethos to a Roman Catholic, he will not grasp it.  Never having experienced it he will relate it to the forms of Roman Catholic monastic life with which he is familiar.  Fair enough, but his paradigms of monastic life simply won't meld with Orthodox monastic life and he is left with an impoverished understanding.

There is really only one way to develop an understanding - by experiencing life in a monastery.

Some books are of course useful for helping people understand.  There is Robinson's little book "Monasticism in the Orthodox Churches" which was written by an Anglican but it is still valuable.  Somewhere on Google books you can download it in .pdf.  If someone finds the link, can they please post it.



"Monasticism in the Orthodox Churches" by N.F. Robnison

And thanks for the recommendation, Father!  It looks like a good read.
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« Reply #18 on: June 24, 2010, 11:32:35 AM »

Can you possibly try and share someof the differences with me?

I have a friend who is an English nun.  She was originally a Wantage nun which is Anglican and on an exchange of Anglican-Orthodox nuns for a few months between England and Serbia  she was sent to the monastery of Zica in Serbia (where I met her.)  She converted to Orthodoxy.   Metropolitan Anthony Bloom London became her spiritual father,  Later she became the abbess of the monastery of Gradac in Serbia - a sign of the esteem in which she was held by the Serbian Church authorities.  She was thoroughly formed in the ethos of Orthodox monasticism.

Once she visited the States and visited an Orthodox monastery in New York state.  She stayed one night and cut the visit short.   She found it too alien to the monasticism she had seen and experienced in Europe.

Other monks and nuns know what she experienced.  But it's hard to explain unless you have experienced traditional monastic life.
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« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2010, 05:50:53 PM »

I have a friend who is an English nun.  She was originally a Wantage nun which is Anglican and on an exchange of Anglican-Orthodox nuns for a few months between England and Serbia  she was sent to the monastery of Zica in Serbia (where I met her.)  She converted to Orthodoxy.   Metropolitan Anthony Bloom London became her spiritual father,  Later she became the abbess of the monastery of Gradac in Serbia - a sign of the esteem in which she was held by the Serbian Church authorities.  She was thoroughly formed in the ethos of Orthodox monasticism.

Once she visited the States and visited an Orthodox monastery in New York state.  She stayed one night and cut the visit short.   She found it too alien to the monasticism she had seen and experienced in Europe.

Other monks and nuns know what she experienced.  But it's hard to explain unless you have experienced traditional monastic life.

Can you please try and elaborate on some of the differences she noted? I am only curious because I have some exposure to Orthodox monastic life in America, but really only at the famous Athonite Greek Monastery in Arizona, and even there it's air conditioned and richly endowed. IN many ways it seemed like some Greek cultural preserve in the States, but I also felt like everything there was very strict and genuine. Other than that, the nuns which are tied into my parish lie in the city and are frequently exposed to secular life through the parish, so I'm not sure that I am getting a gaze into this "genuine" Orthodoxy I'm only supposed to find in the Old World.

Anyway, specifics about which monastery it was might be helpful in understanding her assessment as well.
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« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2010, 05:52:49 PM »

I don't think anyone can attempt a minimal definition.

For example,no matter how articulately or passionately one tries to describe Orthodox monastic life and ethos to a Roman Catholic, he will not grasp it.  Never having experienced it he will relate it to the forms of Roman Catholic monastic life with which he is familiar.  Fair enough, but his paradigms of monastic life simply won't meld with Orthodox monastic life and he is left with an impoverished understanding.

There is really only one way to develop an understanding - by experiencing life in a monastery.

Some books are of course useful for helping people understand.  There is Robinson's little book "Monasticism in the Orthodox Churches" which was written by an Anglican but it is still valuable.  Somewhere on Google books you can download it in .pdf.  If someone finds the link, can they please post it.

Another excellent book is Philip Sherrard's "Athos: The Holy Mountain"

Maybe others will recommend other books.

Monks of Optina Monastery




Father,
Can you possibly try and share someof the differences with me?

Apparently not only Roman Catholics cannot understand the essence of this monasticism, but also the Orthodox monks of North America are equally clueless based on his other post. So don't feel bad, you'll just never get it. As a Roman Catholic and and America, you're a doubly lost cause.  Roll Eyes
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