(1) We continued our celebration of Easter! This Easter Monday
is ranked as an O.P., and our Sunday schedule helped us relax a bit
after the various celebrations of yesterday's solemnity. Father
Prior Kurt presided and preached at our 9:30 Conventual Eucharist,
and we enjoyed colloquium at our main meal today at noon.
Ice cream treats at supper rounded things out nicely. We'll tone
things down a bit for the remainder of the week, although there
will still be the alleluias, Glorias, and Easter sequence in
church, and the refectory tables full of Easter candies and
pastries will last a few more days.
(2) Easter Tuesday is one of the two days we celebrate as an
O.S. (December 27 being the other); Father Subprior Guerric
presided and preached. We're back on our weekday schedule, but we
did honor the day with colloquium at our evening meal. +++
Our seminarians have returned from their Easter break. For many of
them, of course, it was very much a "working break" as they were
involved in the Holy Week and Triduum liturgies in their
(3) Now that the days immediately after Easter (with their
rankings of O.P. and O.S.) have passed, Father Colman has begun his
duties as Mass Heb.
(4) For the first time in many a year, the Stars and Stripes are
flying over the hill-at night. This afternoon our physical
facilities crew finished installing the lighting that will allow us
to fly the flag 24/7. Since this past September 11, teams of
seminarians have taken turns raising and lowering Old Glory each
weekday. We're grateful for their faithful service these past
months, and discharge them honorably from these duties.
(5) We're looking forward to a big weekend on the hill. Family
members and friends of our seminarians who will be ordained to the
diaconate tomorrow have begun to arrive, and the final preparations
for liturgy, music and meals are under way.
(6) Archbishop Joseph Tobin ordained eight of our third-year
theology seminarians to the diaconate this morning: Daniel Bedel,
David Marcotte, Benjamin Syberg, and Timothy Wyciskalla
(Archdiocese of Indianapolis); Gwant-Woo (Elijah) Cho and Chul-Min
(Michael) Moon (Diocese of Busan, South Korea); Mauricio Abeldano
Flores (Diocese of Memphis), and Xavier Raj Yesudasan (Diocese of
Palayamkottai, India). Congratulations to these men, and to their
classmates who will be ordained in their home dioceses later this
spring and summer!
(7) Father Brendan is our Mass Heb on this Second Sunday (and
week) of Easter, presiding and preaching at our 9:30 Conventual
Mass. We enjoyed having guests of several of the newly ordained
deacons join us for Mass this morning. Most will be returning to
their homes today and tomorrow.
(8) We celebrated the transferred feast of the Annunciation
today (it fell this year on Monday of Holy Week and, as is
customary in such cases, was moved to after Easter). An O.P.-ranked
feast, Father Prior Kurt presided and Brother Victor, a monk and
deacon from Conception Abbey studying with us these past years,
preached. Brother Victor will be ordained to the priesthood this
summer. Though today is a solemnity, we followed our weekday
schedule, and so enjoyed colloquium at our evening
(9) Shouts of rejoicing could be heard from various sectors of
our campus today, as the air conditioning was turned on! After
several weeks of rather cold temperatures and high winds, things
are warming up: the forecast for most of the next 10 days calls for
70 degrees…and occasionally 80.
(10) This evening we had the 25th Annual Service Recognition
Banquet, during which we honored 75 active co-workers and 57
retirees who have 25 years or more of service. Fr. Adrian Burke,
OSB, former business manager/treasurer, spoke at the banquet, and
10 co-workers received extra-special recognition. We are blessed to
have such faithful and competent co-workers, and it is our
privilege to recognize them with a special evening!
(11) Father Abbot left early this morning for Marmion Abbey in
Aurora, Illinois, to attend a meeting of the Abbot President's
(12) Among visitors to our hill these days are 16 men from St.
Barnabas Catholic Church in Indianapolis making a several-day
retreat, and 13 individuals from Holy Trinity Catholic Church and
St. Anthony Catholic Church in Indianapolis, making their retreats.
We welcome all pilgrims!
(13) About 20 of us enjoyed the last "monk lunch" at the present
UnStable (Marty Gym). We look forward to moving into the new
premises in Kleber Gym! +++ Congratulations to two more of our
seminarians: William Thompson and Emmanuel Udoh were ordained to
the diaconate this morning at St. Stephen Cathedral in Owensboro,
(14) Father Eugene is our Mass Heb on this Third Sunday (and
week) of Easter. He was assisted by Deacon Todd Nance of the
Diocese of Tulsa, who will be ordained to the priesthood at the end
(15) Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the
bombing at the Boston Marathon. The TV rooms in the monastery were
occupied a good part of the afternoon and evening.
(16) Our flag is flying at half-staff, in memory of the victims
of yesterday's bombing. Our prayers continue-prayers for all
victims of terrorism.
(17) Weather reports today called for watches for both
thunderstorms and tornados. Fortunately, neither came to be.
(18) Our fourth-year seminarians enjoyed the annual "Black and
White Dinner" this evening, hosted by the President-Rector. It's
the last "big event" our upcoming ordinands and staff have to enjoy
each other's company-and reminisce.
(19) About 60 lay degree students are arriving this evening and
tomorrow morning for another round of weekend courses. Subjects and
instructors are "Creed in History and Theology" by Dr. Richard
Collins; "Book of Genesis" by Fr. Damian Dietlein, OSB; "Servant
Leadership for Ministry" by Ms. Chris Urbanowski; "Ministry to
Families" by Dr. Ryan LaMothe; and "Adult Religious Education" by
Dr. Thomas Walters.
(20) While our lay degree students were hitting the books,
dozens of seminarians, staff, faculty and monks were trying to hit
the ball! This morning and afternoon witnessed the first major
Softball Tourney in quite some time. Many played, some were
victorious, all enjoyed the fine weather, the exercise, and the
accompanying eats and drinks. Our infirmary staff is laying out
extra jars of Vapor Rub for possible use tomorrow!
(21) Father Joseph is our Mass Heb on this Fourth Sunday (and
week) of Easter. Once again, Deacon Todd Nance of the Diocese of
Tulsa assisted at our 9:30 Eucharist.
(22) Father Eugene began offering the retreat "Biblical Models
of Leadership and their Implications for Priesthood Today" to 11
priests at our Guest House and Retreat Center.
(23) We have two groups with us these next few days, making
retreats. We welcome nine guests from Sacred Heart Parish in Poplar
Bluff, Missouri, for their youth retreat, as we welcome also 13
guests of the Thermwood Corporation of nearby Dale, here for an
international sales group meeting.
(24) Our "new" monastery is 31 years old and is showing signs of
aging. We've begun some major repair work to the plumbing in and
around our refectory and pantry. It's not clear at this point how
extensive and how long this will be, and we're figuring out whether
we'll have to find another place to have our meals for a while.
Very practical concerns!
(25) On this feast of St. Mark, we celebrate the patronal feast
day of Father Mark and Brother John Mark.
(26) Our Board of Overseers is meeting today and tomorrow-their
annual spring enterprise. A special treat this time around is the
official blessing and inauguration of the new UnStable, housed in
Kleber Gym, now called the St. Martin Center. +++
Although he is 94 years old and has been a monk for 73 years, this
is Father Cletus Miller's first feast day with us. Father
Cletus professed his vows as a monk of Saint Meinrad in 1939, and
later transferred his stability to Blue Cloud Abbey, our foundation
in South Dakota. Blue Cloud closed this past August and he and his
confrere, (former) Abbot Alan, came to saint Meinrad and, this past
December, were brought back into our Chapter. Happy Feast Day,
(27) A "slight but steady" rain today, just about all day.
+++ Father Meinrad is taking Father Joseph's place as Mass
Heb for the second consecutive day, as Father Joseph is off giving
oblate retreats and attending oblate chapter meetings off the
(28) Father Mark is our Mass Heb on this Fifth Sunday (and week)
of Easter. +++ We offer greetings to Father Louis
Hacker, who today celebrates his patronal feast day. +++ Brother
Zachary concluded offering the weekend retreat "Women of the Bible"
to 16 participants at our Guest House and Retreat Center.
(29) On most Monday evenings we enjoy a "special dessert," as we
move into the calefactory after supper for freshly baked cookies,
small pies and the like. This evening we had a "special note" to
the special dessert night, as we said farewell to the six confreres
from other monasteries who have been with us this past year,
studying in our seminary. Three of these confreres will be
returning to us in August for the next academic year - Br. Philippe
Tchalou, of Monastere de l'Incarnation, Togo, West Africa; Br.
Macario Martinez, of Conception Abbey, Missouri; and Br. Simon
Baker of Saint Benedict's Abbey, Atchison, Kansas. But we bid a
longer-lasting farewell to Br. Victor Schinstock, of Conception
Abbey, Missouri; Br. Philipp Steiner of Einsiedeln Abbey,
Switzerland; and Br. Matthias Balz, of Münsterschwarzach Abbey,
Germany. We wish our "visiting confreres" well, and ask God's
blessings on their prayer and work this summer and beyond!
(30) On this last day of the month, I hand over "About the
House" to Brother Francis, who will report on the various monastic
goings and comings during May. This Sunday, the 5th, I will join
Brother Maurus on a 12-day cruise on the Baltic Sea. It's a
"first-ever" event for me. Those of you who know Brother Maurus
will appreciate what I mean when I say, "He's stopped counting!"
God's blessings to all!
We conclude with our monthly selection from the holy
A monk from a distant region may
arrive for a visit and wish to live in the monastery as a guest. If
he is satisfied with the local customs that he finds there and does
not trouble the monastery with his excessive demands, he should be
allowed to stay as long as he likes-provided he is satisfied with
what he finds! If, however, he points out some shortcoming calmly
and with loving humility, the abbot should consider the matter
carefully. Indeed, the Lord may have sent him for that very
Chapter 61, "How Visiting Monks are to be Received"
Translation by Fr. Terence Kardong, OSB, monk of Assumption