Each year, the Mepkin Community celebrates Joy Never Ending Sunday, which commemorates the anniversary of the foundation of the monastery in November 1949. This year, we celebrated, without any guests, the 71st anniversary of our foundation.
It’s a long and happy story, so the community was very pleased Saturday evening at Chapter when Father Joe invited Brother Mary Joseph and Brother John to share something of their experiences of having lived in the monastery for many years. Brother Joseph recounted how he had come from Gethsemani, and how the worst of times were actually the best of times. Brother John gave us some intriguing historical snippets from times past, with his eye always fixed on the future.
On Sunday, Nov. 15th, Mass was celebrated in the church preceded by the annual blessing of the monks’ graves. You can read Father Joe’s homily here. This is a particularly meaningful celebration because it allows us to remember and pray for those on whose shoulders we walk. After Mass and Midday Prayer, a celebratory meal was served in the refectory. In the evening, the monks were entertained by a beautiful half-hour concert from two of the Agricultural Institute guests, Jordan and Walid, and our Monastic Resident Fred. All three are very talented musicians, and they shared with us some works from J.S. Bach, Thomas Moore, Manuel Ponce, Jay Ungar, Albert Brumley, and some original works written by Jordan himself. The evening concluded with the singing of a number of Christmas carols. All the monks were deeply appreciative of this musical gift to bring a memorable conclusion to beautiful and meaningful day.