From the top left, clockwise: The Sisters of Saint Benedict’s Monastery bless Sister Karen Rose after her election as prioress. Sister Nicole Kunze pins a corsage on Sister Karen Rose at the rite of acceptance of election. Sister Karen Rose with the facilitators of the discernment process: Sister Kimberly Porter, left and Sister Lynn McKenzie right.
Sister Karen Rose will serve as the eighteenth prioress of Saint Benedict’s Monastery, St. Joseph, MN. Sister Karen was elected for a six-year term on Saturday, February 25, following a discernment process. The rite of installation will take place on Sunday, June 4. Sister Karen will succeed Sister Susan Rudolph.
Sister Karen was born in Nantwich, England, She studied philosophy and theology at Oxford University and earned a doctorate in nursing at Manchester University. She entered Saint Benedict’s Monastery as a postulant in 2007, made her first profession in 2009, and perpetual profession in 2012. She is currently the director of the monastery’s Office of Mission Advancement.
The discernment process was facilitated by Sister Kimberly Porter, a member of St. Walburg Monastery, Covington, KY, and Sister Lynn McKenzie, a member of Sacred Heart Monastery, Cullman, AL, and president of the Monastic Congregation of St. Scholastica. Sister Nicole Kunze, vice-president of the Monastic Congregation of St. Benedict presided at the canonical election.
Saint Benedict’s Monastery was founded in 1857 and currently has 157 members.
The president and the prioresses of seven member monasteries of the Monastic Congregation of St. Benedict (MCSB) attended the gathering of the Conference of Benedictine Prioresses (CBP) at Sacred Heart Monastery, Cullman, AL, February 1-8. They joined prioresses and presidents of the Monastic Congregation of St. Scholastica and the Federation of St. Gertrude as well as the prioress general of the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration and prioresses of several women’s monasteries that are not affiliated with a federation or congregation.
Along with Sister Nancy Bauer, president of MCSB, the following prioresses attended: Sister Susan Rudolph, Saint Benedict’s Monastery, St. Joseph, MN; Sister Beverly Raway, St. Scholastica Monastery, Duluth, MN; Sister Catherine Nehotte, St. Paul’s Monastery, St. Paul, MN; Sister Angela Hoffman, St. Placid Priory, Lacey, WA; Sister Nicole Kunze, Annunciation Monastery, Bismarck, ND; Sister Susan Hutchens, St. Mary Monastery, Rock Island, IL; and Sister Marva Coakley, St. Martin Monastery, Nassau, Bahamas.
During the meeting Sister Nicole Kunze was elected chair of CBP for a three-year term and Sister Susan Rudolph completed her term as a member of the Core Planning Committee.
Along with business items, participants met in small groups to talk about matters of interest in Benedictine monasticism today, such as autonomy of monasteries, collaboration among monasteries, and the current phenomenon of monasteries coming to completion.
The CBP session included two days of a joint meeting with abbots of the men’s Benedictine monasteries and presidents of their congregations. Presentations at the joint meeting focused on care of the sick within our monasteries. Brother John Mark Falkenhain, OSB, a monk of St. Meinrad Archabbey, addressed mental health concerns and a team of caregivers from Mount St. Scholastica Monastery in Atchison, KS, talked about the various forms of dementia and care of the dying. The team included Sister Esther Fangman, prioress, Renee Porter and Stacey Davis.
Sister Nancy jotted down comments made by prioresses during the CBP meeting. Following are some samples.
“We have just moved into our new monastery.”
“We moved into our new monastery four years ago. We have replaced our dishwasher four times.”
“We need a bookkeeper.”
“We need a secretary.”
“The youngest in our community is 75.”
“We decided we will give temporary housing to Ukrainian refugees.”
“Oblates give us energy.”
“In 2020, we made the decision that we didn’t know what our future is, but whatever it is, we’re going to do it together.”
Sister Marva Coakley, prioress of St. Martin Monastery, Nassau, Bahamas, Sister Susan Hutchens, prioress of St. Mary Monastery, Rock Island, IL, and Sister Beverly Raway, prioress of St. Scholastica Monastery, Duluth, MN, participate in conversation at a session of the CBP.
Sister Susan Rudolph, prioress of Saint Benedict’s Monastery in St. Joseph, MN, and Sister Rosann Ocken, prioress of Norfolk Priory of the Missionary Benedictine Sisters in Nebraska, exchange candlelight for the celebration of the Feast of the Presentation.
Sister Catherine Nehotte, prioress of St. Paul’s Monastery in Minnesota, provided back and neck massages during the CBP meeting. Here she provides a massage to Sister Joanna Burley, prioress of the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia, Bristow, VA.
Sister Angela Hoffman (left), prioress of St. Placid Priory, Lacey, Washington, and Sister Marva Coakley (back right), prioress of St. Martin Monastery, Nassau, Bahamas, with prioresses from other congregations.
Presidents of the men’s and women’s Benedictine congregations at St. Bernard Abbey, Cullman, Alabama
A presidential selfie at Larkwood Falls in Cullman, Alabama. Presidents of the Benedictine women’s congregations, from left to right: Sister Jeanne Weber, president of the Federation of St. Gertrude; Sister Dawn Annette Mills, prioress general of the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, Clyde, MO; Sister Nancy Bauer, president of the Monastic Congregation of St. Benedict; and Sister Lynn McKenzie, president of the Monastic Congregation of St. Scholastica.
The prioresses and presidents of the women’s Benedictine congregations met with the Benedictine abbots and presidents of the men’s congregations at St. Bernard Abbey in Cullman, Alabama. Pictured with Sister Nancy Bauer, president of the Monastic Congregation of St. Benedict, is Abbot President Jonathan Licari of the American Cassinese Congregation. Sister Nancy and the abbot president are members of neighboring monasteries in central Minnesota – Sister Nancy is a member of Saint Benedict’s Monastery in St. Joseph, MN, and Abbot President Licari is a member of St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, MN.
Sister Laura Suhr (left) and Sister Bridgette Powers (right) with Sister Susan Rudolph, prioress of Saint Benedict’s Monastery.
Sisters Bridgette Powers and Laura Suhr made perpetual profession as members of Saint Benedict’s Monastery, St. Joseph, MN, on July 11, 2022. Both sisters grew up in Minnesota and both graduated from the College of St. Benedict. As of December 2022, both have completed master’s degrees in theology at St. John’s University School of Theology, Collegeville, MN.
Sister Bridgette works in the monastery’s Spirituality Center and directs Benedictine Friends, a program which establishes relationships between students of the College of St. Benedict and sisters of the monastery. Sister Laura directs the monastery’s Girls, God and Good Times summer camp.
Centennial Celebration at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Crookston, Minnesota
Members of the Federation of St. Benedict were present for the Centennial Celebration of Mount Saint Benedict Monastery on Good Shepherd Sunday. Pictured here are Sister Susan Rudolph, Sister Beverly Raway, Sister Shawn Caruth (prioress of Mount Saint Benedict), Sister Catherine Nehotte, Sister Jacqueline Leiter, Sister Mary Weidner, and Sister Danile Lynch.
Mount Saint Benedict Monastery is a founding member of the Federation of Saint Gertrude and a daughter house of our own Saint Scholastica Monastery in Duluth. The monastery was founded on Good Shepherd Sunday 1919.
With joy our community celebrated the installation of Sister Catherine Nehotte as twelfth prioress of St. Paul’s Monastery and the Blessing of Leadership on May 5. Sister Kerry O’Reilly, Federation President, presided over the installation. We were grateful for the presence of family members, friends, and dear Sisters from our Federation.
Sister Catherine and Sister Kerry
New leadership team of St. Paul’s Monastery: Sister Linda Soler, Sister Mary White, Sister Catherine Nehotte, and Sister Jacqueline Leiter
Sister Catherine shares a moment and a smile with seven of our former prioresses. We are grateful for the many women of wisdom in our community. That in all things, God may be glorified!
The Sisters of St. Paul’s Monastery were blessed during their discernment for election by the presence of three wise women: Sister Lynn McKenzie, election facilitator, and Sister Kerry O’Reilly, Federation President, and Sister Sharon Nohner, election observer. We are grateful for your prayers during our time of discernment.
After prayer and discernment, the Sisters of St. Paul’s Monastery joyfully announce the election of Sister Catherine Nehotte as their twelfth prioress. Installation will take place on May 5, 2019.
The Sisters of Saint Benedict Monastery, Taipei, Taiwan received a second novice who has taken the name Sister Gratia. She was received on December 7, 2018 joining Sister Benedicta in the novitiate. Both women are originally from Vietnam.
The BENEDICTINES in EAST AFRICA and OCEANIA (BEAO) gathered at Saint Benedict Monastery in Taipei, Taiwan November 26-30, 2018. Representatives from monasteries of this geographical area gathered to discuss topics related to monastic life and their monasteries in this region. Abbot Primate Gregory Polan participated as well as Brother Nicholas Koss of Wimmer Priory in Taiwan, a good friend of the Sisters of Taipei.