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So far A Monk has created 21 blog entries.

Maundy Thursday 2022

2022-04-30T16:13:43-05:00April 14th, 2022|Homilies of Father Abbot|

“Before the festival day of the Pasch, Jesus knowing that his hour was come, that he should pass out of this world to the Father; having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them unto the end.” (Jn 13)

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

On the occasion of this solemn Mass of Holy Thursday, of Maundy Thursday, as the traditional expression has it, we meditate both on the institution of the Most Holy Eucharist and on Christ’s own commandment, that is to say, on the great business of fraternal charity. It would be impossible ever to say too much or even enough about these two facets of the Christian life.

There is another topic, directly related to both themes of this Mass, that we have […]

Annunciation 2022

2022-03-26T15:17:53-05:00March 25th, 2022|Homilies of Father Abbot|

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

From all eternity God spoke His Word. From the first day of creation, from the beginning of time, God pronounced many words; God announced to angels and men what men and angels needed to know. Even before there were angels or men, God spoke to Himself, saying “Let there be light, let there be a firmament, fiat lux” (Gen. 1: 3,6). And the announcements and pronouncements continued down through the centuries. Many were God’s winged messengers bearing Divine tidings to earth; many were His prophets, who walked upon its face, spreading knowledge of the Word of God throughout the world below. But the greatest of these pronouncements, the greatest of annunciations was the one made in the fullness of time to the Blessed Virgin Mary, […]

Topping Off

2022-07-09T15:15:49-05:00March 13th, 2022|Letters to the Friends|

As the noise of war rumbles across the world and the social fabric of our nation continues to unravel in many places (but that would have to be for another letter), we monks are building in the backwoods of Oklahoma, the best we can, a little corner of peace—almost heaven—as our way of restoring and renewing all things in Christ, the Lord of heaven and earth. More concretely (the word is very apt), we are pursuing, with the help of brave and competent workers, the erection of our Chapter House, a very important part of the monastery, as mentioned in our newsletter of last October.

In a few weeks the “topping off” ceremony will take place, once the highest point in the edifice is reached. On that day there will be a bit of a celebration, […]

Sailing between Scylla and Charybdis

2022-03-05T15:36:41-06:00January 13th, 2022|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

In the book of Amos we read the following reflection: “No wonder the prudent man keeps silent, the times are so evil.” (Amos 5:13) Sometimes, however, a man must speak, especially in perilous times. Many of you are concerned about the Traditional Latin Mass, whose fate is in the balance as I write this. In fact, there is much to worry about even beyond the question concerning the Latin Mass.

As has happened in the past, the Church, like a great ship, is now passing through a narrow stretch of treacherous water, so to speak, where great perils lurk on either side. On the port side there waits Scylla (to use a Homeric comparison), the evil sea monster of heresy, the tentacles of which have already laid […]

Epiphany 2022

2022-01-22T15:42:59-06:00January 6th, 2022|Homilies of Father Abbot|

And entering into the house, they found the child with Mary his mother, and falling down they adored him (Mt. 2).

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

On the feast of the Epiphany we remember three mysteries of the Faith, all having to do with Christ’s manifestation to the world: the visit of the Magi, the Baptism of the Lord, and the Wedding Feast of Cana, where Jesus performed His first public miracle, turning the water into wine. Of these three mysteries it is the visit of the Magi, the first panel of this mystical triptych, which we contemplate in particular on this sixth day of January, the other two scenes being commemorated in days and weeks to come.

The Holy Father, Pope Francis, has been most adamant about […]

Christmas and the Real Presence

2022-02-05T15:58:45-06:00December 25th, 2021|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Christmas is the season of light and peace par excellence. Its light is that from Heaven, and its peace a peace not of this world. But there is another aspect of this incomparable mystery and celebration, the fact that, while God was always present everywhere and in a special way to His people and to His prophets of old, He now comes to earth, not merely with the presence that is mediated by the Divine grace of revelation, but with the presence which belongs to God in Person, the Real Presence of the Son of God made man, appearing at the humblest spot in all creation, a locality transformed in an instant into the noblest of places beneath Heaven.

Recently at Clear Creek we had the joy […]

Christmas 2021

2022-01-15T15:55:46-06:00December 25th, 2021|Homilies of Father Abbot|

Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given. (Isaiah 9:6)

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ

My Very Dear Brothers of Our Lady of the Annunciation,

These words, which are taken from the Prophet Isaiah, found their perfect accomplishment in a little cave near Bethlehem some two thousand years ago and have continued to echo down through the ages. Indeed, a Child is born to us, and what a Child! Son of Mary, He is also the very Son whom the Father, in the brightness of eternity, before the day-star, engenders as God of God, Light of Light, true God of true God. This Messiah, whom many kings and prophets had longed to see and did not see, longed to hear and did not hear, was delivered into […]

Immaculate Conception 2021

2021-12-18T16:16:31-06:00December 8th, 2021|News|

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

Listen to how Holy Mother Church speaks about the Blessed Virgin Mary in her Immaculate Conception. “Thou art all fair, Mary, and the original stain is not in thee” (1st antiphon of Lauds). “Thy garments are white as snow, and thy face is as the sun” (2nd antiphon). This is the language of a nobler love, the expression of an admiration that stretches beyond the common human measure. We find here a model for our own prayers to Mary.

“Thou art all fair.” Not just fair, but entirely so. This is not of earth, but of the perfection of Heaven. This is not the passing beauty that today is and tomorrow already begins to wither. Sin is the hidden principle of all that is […]

Clear Creek Calendar 2022

2022-01-29T15:27:41-06:00December 1st, 2021|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

Where will the Year of Our Lord 2022 take us? Where does time fly (tempus fugit)? In other cultural milieus time has seemed to be a kind of perpetual mechanism that just turns with the seasons—without end. Not so in the perspective of Holy Scripture. As a noted Catholic philosopher expresses it:

Man is naturally frightened by the irreversibility of his own duration and the very newness of unpredictable events. He refused to face them. Hence, the negation of time by archaic civilizations.… [There are] the oriental conceptions of the eternally recurrent phases of destruction and regeneration of the cosmos. Christianity has taught us that history has a direction, that it works in a determined direction. History is not an eternal return; it does not […]

The Idea of a Pilgrimage

2022-02-05T15:43:21-06:00October 23rd, 2021|Letters to the Friends|

Dear Friend of Clear Creek Abbey,

In an essay entitled The Idea of a Pilgrimage, Hilaire Belloc, who had a certain personal experience of the thing, takes us beyond the mere definition and into the fuller, incarnate, sense of what it means to go on pilgrimage:

There has always hung round the idea of a pilgrimage, with all people and at all times – I except those very rare and highly decadent generations of history in which no pilgrimages are made, nor any journeys, save for curiosity or greed – there has always hung round it, I say, something more than the mere objective. … I will visit the grave of a saint or of a man whom I venerate privately for his virtues and deeds, but on my way I […]

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