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So far A Monk has created 42 blog entries.

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, […]

The Duty To Be Merry

2023-11-17T13:55:24-06:00August 13th, 2023|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Friendship is unique, something like a snowflake or an angel (Saint Thomas Aquinas explains that each angel is unique in terms of personality), and yet freely shared. It differs in intensity, as do the stars (explains Saint Paul somewhere), thereby contributing to the beauty of the universe, a universe that is wonderful in its diversity and proportion. Friendship is a most precious gift in any human life. The same goes for monastic communities.

While a Benedictine prelate, Cardinal Augustine Mayer, was visiting the monks of Notre-Dame de Triors in France many years ago, one day during recreation, upon realizing that there were two Americans in the community (including me), he turned to us Yankees and asked us if we knew of the Poor Clares of Roswell, New […]

St. Benedict 2023

2023-08-19T15:29:59-05:00July 11th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Then Peter answering, said to him: Behold we have left all things, and have followed thee: what therefore shall we have? (Mt. 19: 27)

Dear Brothers and Sisters
My Very Dear Sons,

When Saint Peter declared to the Lord that he and the other Apostles had “left all things” and followed Him, he surely did not fully realize the immense consequences of his words. He certainly did not think at that moment how thousands upon thousands of human beings in future times would imitate his example by giving up all their earthly possessions, in order to be more perfect followers of Christ. How could he have known then that hermits, monks and nuns would someday fill the desert places of earth like so many John the Baptists. Surely, it did not cross Peter’s […]

Saints Peter & Paul 2023

2023-07-22T17:06:05-05:00June 29th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

At that time…Jesus saith to [His disciples]: But whom do you say that I am?

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

There is something supremely important about love in its highest expression. “God is love [or charity],” as the Apostle Saint John teaches us, “and he that abideth in charity, abideth in God and God in him.” Saint Paul, for his part, surpasses himself with his apotheosis, his hymn, of charity in the first letter to the Corinthians. “If I speak with the tongues of men, and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal” (I Corin. 13). In a world where we do not enjoy the beatific vision, where, like birds of the night, we see only by the twilight of […]

Pentecost 2023

2023-07-22T17:03:44-05:00May 28th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

[I]f I by the finger of God cast out devils, doubtless the kingdom of God is come upon you. (Lk. 11:20)

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

On this Sunday, called Pentecost or Whitsunday, that marks the fiftieth day of the Easter season, we commemorate the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and Disciples of the Lord, gathered around the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Upper Room of Jerusalem. The Book of Acts recounts the episode.

And when the days of the Pentecost were accomplished, they all were together in one place: And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as it were of fire, […]

Ascension 2023

2023-07-22T17:02:21-05:00May 18th, 2023|Homilies of Father Abbot|

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

With the entire Holy Catholic Church, Christ’s Mystical Body, we celebrate today the Lord’s Ascension into Heaven. Echoing the praises of the Angels and Archangels, of the Seraphim and Cherubim, of Thrones and Dominations, Principalities, Powers, Virtues, and of the Queen who rules them all, we add the glow of our own gladness to the spiritual brightness of those blessed beings, who feast their eyes on the very vision of God, while the Son of God, in His sacred and resurrected humanity, climbs to the height of His glory.

It was just forty days ago that Christ broke through the bonds of death to rise to a life that will know no decline, but already the time for this departure is upon us. Although […]


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