Today was a very full day at the Chapters. Almost all of it in the main Aula, as most of the Spanish abbots and abbesses will not arrive till Friday. The strike in Italy delayed them, then a strike in Spain has kept them in their own country.
We began with a talk by the Abbot General, Dom Eamon, on the State of the Order. He gave many interesting statistics. One of the most impressive to me was the fact that there are now almost as many nuns in the Order as monks. We were always about twice as many as the nuns. Now there are 2083 monks and 1736 nuns. But where we are is interesting also. Almost all our growth is in Latin America, Africa and parts of Asia. We are decreasing in Europe and North America.
Some important passages from his message.
”The older houses in the Order face many challenges, especially in finding members suitable for positions such as superior, novice director, and cellarer…. The need to care for elderly and infirm brothers and sisters…. The need to adapt economy to the size and capabilities of the community.”Read More »
I arrived safely in Rome around 4 AM, Mepkin time after an uneventful plane ride. We were stuck on the tarmac in Charlotte for an hour and a half, but beyond that, all went smoothly. I waited in the airport in Rome for a good while, and then eight of us, most of whom arrived after me, were taken in a small van to Assisi.
Believe it or not, I have the exact same room as I was given three years ago. Third floor, looking out toward the old city up the hill.
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The Crèche Festival Selection and Design Committee met on Monday, August 29, 2011 to select pieces for the 2011 Mepkin Abbey Crèche Festival and to begin the design work. This year’s exhibit will feature sets from the collections of low country collectors as well as original pieces from low country artists and sets donated to the Abbey collection not previously exhibited.Read More »
News 9th Annual Creche Selection CommitteeRead More »
On Friday, August 12, 2011, Jason Lowman arrived at Mepkin Abbey. Three months earlier and 4,200 miles ago he had left the Pacific Ocean in Oregon and rode across country as an outreach project for cancer awareness and to raise funds for a cure. He spent an hour sharing with the monks the “contemplative” dimensions of his journey. We agreed that Jason’s story will not only bring hope to those living with cancer but also help restore “hope” in humanity. If you would like to gain more information about Jason and read his journal of this awesome journey on his website at www.4000milesofhope.comRead More »