In a brief ceremony at the monastery entrance, Patrick Allbright and Andrew Levering were clothed in the Benedictine habit at Saint Meinrad Archabbey, St. Meinrad, IN, on August 5. The two novices now begin a year of monastic formation, including study of the Rule of St. Benedict and monastic history.
Novice Patrick, 26, is from Loogootee, IN. He was a member of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Loogootee and attended Loogootee High School.
He studied law enforcement at Vincennes University Jasper Campus, graduating in 2017 with an associate degree. Before joining the monastery, Novice Patrick worked as a police officer and dispatcher for Loogootee Police Department and as a corrections officer with Daviess County Sheriff’s Office. He was also a private first class in the Marine Corps in 2020 before being medically discharged.
Novice Andrew, 24, is a native of Libertyville, IL, where he was a member of St. Joseph Parish and attended Vernon Hills High School in Vernon Hills, IL.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in Christian theology from Hope College in 2021. After graduating from college, Novice Andrew worked as a forklift driver.
As novices, they will take a year off from formal studies and trades. The novitiate is a time of prayer and learning intended to help a novice discern his vocation as a monk. At the end of this year, a novice may be permitted to profess temporary vows of obedience, fidelity to the monastic way of life and stability in the community of Saint Meinrad.