June 06, 2006

The Vow of Stability

Benedictine monks make a vow of "stability"--a commitment to one specific monastery for life.

I've already posted an explanation of life in a Benedictine monastery at monks.blogspot.com for which you'll find a link entitled "One Monk's Monastery" over there in the right hand column.

Otherwise . . .
Click HERE for it.


Blogger young-philothea said...

Father, i have a question, If the monastery have a 'daughter' (not sure if that's the right term) monastery, (ex. The Westminster Abbey's a daughter house of Mount Angel) can a monk be transferred from Mount Angel to Westminster and vice versa? I'm just wondering what happens then if the monks are called to start a new monastery in a new location and how that affects their vows? do they establish the monastery and go back to their own, or do they stay at the new one they established? thank you for you time.

7:19 PM  
Blogger Father Stephanos, O.S.B. said...

When a monastery is large enough to do so, it can send a group of monks somewhere to start up a new monastery.

The new monastery or "daughter" starts out as a "dependent house" receiving material resources and monks from the "mother".

Hopefully the new monastery grows. If it grows to a point where it is attracting new vocations to itself, and also develops means of supporting itself financially, then the new monastery can ask the "mother" (and Rome) for independence.

However, in the process of asking for independence, the monks in the new monastery are each given the choice of staying with the new monastery or going back to the original monastery.

Once independence goes into effect, the monks of the new monastery remain monks of that new monastery for life (unless the "new" monastery decides in later years to start up another monastery).

Otherwise, monks are not transferred from monastery to monastery.

8:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, Fr. Stephanos!

I've recently come to your blog, and I do enjoy it ... I have to say that I laughed at that photo of John Paul the Beloved that you use. :)

Thank you for the great info on oblates and the vow of stability. For some reason, I have been "closer" to the Benedictines than any other religious order -- despite the fact that I spent my entire academic life in a Dominican university! (Now, don't tell them I said that, OK?) I have a St. Benedict medal which I bring with me wherever I go.

I hope you can help me with this question: is there an age limit for a person who wants to enter a Benedictine monastery? I ask this because I have thought about it -- but, since I am the only child of a widowed mother, I can't find it in my heart to leave my mother, as she really has no one but me.

Thank you, and God bless you!

12:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi. Fr. Stephanos, it's me again, the one who asked about the age limits for entering a monastery.

I just read your history, and I just wanted you to know that I'm also from the Philippines! Great to know that you're a "kababayan", in a sense, although you grew up in the US. :)

God bless!

1:20 AM  
Blogger Father Stephanos, O.S.B. said...

Generally monasteries have a flexible age limit. Each monastery determines that for itself.

9:51 AM  

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