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So far A Monk has created 47 blog entries.

The One Adventurer

2024-06-14T12:01:14-05:00June 13th, 2024|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Here is a spiritual arrow, well drawn and well aimed, offered in the fight for Catholic Christian sanity, on the occasion of Father’s Day 2024.

        — br. Philip Anderson, abbot

With Father’s Day upon the horizon, a few lines from the French poet, Charles Peguy,Cf. John Saward’s remarkable book The Way of the Lamb: The Spirit of Childhood and the End of the Age, in which the author gives his opinion on page 96 that Peguy, while not a saint, was a prophet in the strict sense of the term. seem appropriate:

There is only one adventurer in the world, as can be seen very clearly in the modern world, the father of a family. Even the […]

Pentecost 2024

2024-05-25T12:25:56-05:00May 19th, 2024|Homilies of Father Abbot|

And there appeared to them parted tongues as if were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them: and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2).

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
My very Dear Sons,

The scene of the first Christian Pentecost, as described in the Book of Acts, only lasted for a few minutes—perhaps an hour. The historic event was limited in time and space. But the mystery contained in this supernatural occurrence cascades down through the ages and ever renews the Church and the face of the earth.

Over the centuries spiritual tongues of fire have appeared at regular intervals. Our Blessed Father Saint Benedict was one such spiritual tongue of fire. Saint Francis was such a flame, as were Saint Dominic and Saint Ignatius […]

Ascension 2024

2024-05-18T11:43:37-05:00May 9th, 2024|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
My Very Dear Sons,

Everything about the feast of the Ascension speaks to us of the vertical dimension of human existence. Ye men of Galilee, why wonder you, looking up to heaven? This seems very normal in the context of the Christian faith that has us say so often, Our Father who art in Heaven. Not only does our faith point us in the direction of higher things—of celestial matters, of heavenly realities—but also it orients our whole being toward a supernatural destiny, an entirely new reality that surpasses even the highest physical objects we can see or imagine. We are Christians: all of this is our birthright. By virtue of our Holy Baptism, we are citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Much of modern society and of […]

A Word That Moves Heaven And Earth

2024-04-20T17:54:54-05:00April 13th, 2024|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

There is a little word whose worth is impossible to measure. Its origins are somewhat mysterious, but it emerges from the prayer of ancient Israel and echoes down the ages, animating the prayers of the early Christians and finding a place even in the final chapters of the Apocalypse. It is especially present in the Church’s liturgy at Easter and throughout Paschaltide. It contains the Divine Name and much more. You have no doubt guessed by now what this little word is.Sunday Vespers Alleluia Antiphon

Saint John heard it sung with a voice that shook the heavens: “I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of […]

Annunciation 2024 (Transferred)

2024-04-20T16:58:48-05:00April 8th, 2024|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
My very dear sons,

Today, as it sometimes happens, we celebrate the solemnity of the Annunciation, under the glorious light of the Resurrection of Christ. How the brightness of the Risen Lord enhances today’s celebration! It seems that we find here a perfect blending of the two great facets of the Christian faith, Incarnation and Redemption. What was announced to Mary of Nazareth, concerning the child to be conceived in her virginal womb, finds in the empty Tomb of Easter and the glorified Body of Christ its full accomplishment.

At the dawn of History, when the world began, God uttered His multiple “fiat”, Let there be” : “Let there be light…; Let there be a firmament…; Let the waters that are under heaven be gathered together…” (Gen. 1: […]

The Wind in the Wilderness

2024-02-23T17:48:11-06:00January 13th, 2024|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Poised on the threshold of a new year of God’s grace, while we prayerfully consider the challenges that confront us, whether in the world in general, in our American society (on the brink of mental, if not material civil war), or even in the Church, we are tempted by discouragement. Is our world not going to be ripped apart? As Catholic Christians, we are taught to cultivate the theological virtue of hope, but the human landscape that surrounds us seems very much to be taking the shape of a wilderness. How shall we manage?

Well, in fact, if we can free ourselves for a moment from the cultural shallows, where all things tend to descend into mud and muck, if we can lift our heads again like […]

Christmas 2023

2023-12-30T15:20:16-06:00December 25th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come forth the captain that shall rule my people Israel. (Matthew 2:6)

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
My very dear sons,

It is high time we took the road to Bethlehem. Like the Magi, it is time we followed the star toward the City of David, not only because it is Christmas, but because we stand in need of much that is to be found in that place. Our world has grown cold. Times are hard. We are freezing in our materialism and our cultural sinfulness. The Lord is our last refuge: we need to see Him. Let us go over to Bethlehem, said the shepherds, and let us see this […]

Crowd Around The Crib

2023-12-22T17:34:32-06:00December 22nd, 2023|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Would you like to flee the calculated madness that dominates much of contemporary society? or even a certain chaos that troubles the Church? And do this without cultural cowardice, without escapism? Would you like to find release by means of a supernatural realism, the surest guard of sanity? Then come to the place where this can happen—come crowd around the Crib. We will find ourselves there in good company, rubbing elbows (most respectfully), not only with the Holy Family, the Shepherds, and the Magi, but also (liturgically speaking) with those perfect champions of the pro-life cause, the Holy Innocents, and that great man, St. Thomas Becket, Chaucer’s “holy blissful martyr,” along with so many others, whose feasts we celebrate in the Octave that prolongs Christmas. Truly a holy […]

All Saints 2023

2023-11-04T16:14:45-05:00November 1st, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Post haec vidi turbam magnam…After this I saw a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and tribes, and peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne, and in sight of the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands (Apoc. 7:9).

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
My very dear sons,

There is a question that has crossed the mind of every believer at one time or another, and tested the mind of many a theologian, both in our day and in times past. It is the problem of the number of the elect: what part of mankind, in the end, will have been saved from the terrible fate of eternal damnation and what part welcomed into the blessed life of God’s eternal friendship? “How narrow is the […]

Assumption 2023

2023-08-19T15:28:57-05:00August 15th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Signum magnum apparuit in caelo, A great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. (Revelation 12:1)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
My very dear sons,

Often has Saint John’s vision of the woman clothed with the sun with the moon under her feet been understood as a prophecy describing historical events surrounding a given generation of believers. Such was surely the case with the early Christians, who expected the end of the world to be very near. More generally, in this prophetic image we contemplate both the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Church herself as she endures the hardships of her earthly pilgrimage and the great war that is waged between God and the devil, […]

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