January 13, 2012

Religious Vocations Supplement

Prayer and work: Monks of Saint Meinrad continue ancient traditions in the present

This photo essay shows how the monks pray, work and share life together in community in a tradition deeply rooted in the history of the Church. (Photos courtesy of Saint Meinrad Archabbey)

The above photo essay shows how the monks pray, work and share life together in community in a tradition deeply rooted in the history of the Church. (Photos courtesy of Saint Meinrad Archabbey) Click the image to see a larger version

By Sean Gallagher

The Benedictine monks of Saint Meinrad Archabbey in St. Meinrad have been witnesses to the Gospel and servants of the Church in southern Indiana for more than 150 years.

But the tradition of prayer and work that they carry on today can be traced back 1,500 years to the Rule that St. Benedict wrote during the sixth century in Italy.

From the way in which they gather for prayer in their church several times a day to their care for infirmed monks and welcoming guests to the monastery, it guides the life of the Saint Meinrad monastic community.

Currently, there are 95 monks of Saint Meinrad, ranging in age from 23 to 94. Many of them are priests. Some are solemnly professed brothers.

Some monks teach or serve in the administration of Saint Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology, the community’s primary apostolate.

Others assist at Abbey Press, which produces and sells religious gift items, booklets, pamphlets and magazines, and at Abbey Caskets.

Parish ministry both within and outside the Archdiocese of Indianapolis has also been a ministry of the monks of Saint Meinrad for most of its history.

(For more information on Saint Meinrad Archabbey, log on to www.saintmeinrad.edu.)

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