Sister Linda Romey, a member of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, PA, addressed the delegates, prioresses, councilors, and visitors gathered at Annunciation Monastery for the 2018 General Chapter of our Federation.
Taking up the Chapter Theme of Tending the Benedictine Charism, she offered a new and creative model for creating the futures for our monasteries: the “open-source” process that grew up in the software development world. The analagy is apt, with clear and direct applications to our monastic futures.
Do you wonder what “open-source” means? Here’s how Sister Linda defines it:
“Open-source,” in the context of software development, is a specific approach to creating computer software. The idea is that making code openly available for developers will create better code, and making it freely available to end users will increase adoption, result in ongoing evaluation, more use cases and a continuous cycle of improvement, development and new releases.
Open-source is an attitude, a mindset, a pattern of action that shares, builds on what has been shared, and offers the results to the world.
Wonder what it would look like in real life? Sister Linda gave us a prime example: her presentation to our Federation was shared with the world as an article in the Global Sisters Report. Click on this link to her article and become part of the Benedictine open-source movement.
We welcomed the public and members of diverse religious and cultural communities to our grounds to pray for immigrant and suffering families Sat. July 14.
Rabbi Linda Bertenthal from Temple Emanuel, Davenport, IA prayed a Shabbat children’s blessing.
Rev. Jerome Green from Anchored in the Lord Ministries, Rock Island, IL prayed “We Live Above Nature” by Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Dr. Lisa Killinger, Muslim Community of the Quad Cities, prayed a Sufi prayer for peace.
Olivia Best, Alleman High School 2018 graduate, shared a story of an immigrant child’s horrific experience.
We also read a lovely Native American prayer submitted by Josie Ironshield, Sage Sisters of the Quad Cities.
The bells rang, the sun shone, and – during the Native American prayer – the Lord spoke volumes in thunder.
The rains were holy waters of God’s love at the end. If you have a Facebook account, Watch now!
We await the arrival of the prioresses, delegates, and guests for the 26th General Chapter of the Federation of Saint Benedict. May the bell banner of Annunciation Monastery guide you to our front door!
The prayer intention for Annunciation Monastery’s monthly Day of Contemplation this month is the Federation of Saint Benedict and its future planning. We remember all the members of the Federation and ask the Lord to bless us as we discern what the future holds for each of our communities and the Federation. I
I am on my way to Japan to be with the Sisters in Muroran for their election of Prioress, I thought I would stop in Taiwan and visit the Sisters. They have quite a full house these days.
I met for the first time in person the newest member of the Benedictine house that is forming in China. I had experienced Sister Scholastica on Skype when last here in 2015 for their election and found she is even more charming in person. Sister Scholastica professed first vows in June, 2016 for two years. She is now visiting at the Motherhouse in Taiwan and experiencing an open and free experience of community living. She will return to China to rejoin Sister Austin her director and Sister Maria also a junior sister.
I met with Sister Scholastica and Taiwanese Novice Misericordia and we had a discussion about our unique Benedictine vows. It was a challenge in two languages with Novice Misericordia interpreting, but still it was profound and engaging. Novice Misericordia will profess first vows for two years on May 28, 2017.
The Sisters at St. Benedict Monastery in Taiwan have been in communication with students in Vietnam and over the last few years. Five women have joined them to experience monastic life. They are studying Chinese, which they tell me is similar to the Vietnamese language. They live, work and pray with the Sisters to see if they would like to become aspirants to this community, that which precedes postulancy.
It is delightful to see the Sisters again, though I miss seeing Sister Luca. Taiwan is at the end of the rainy season, sunny one day and raining the next, in preparation for a lush and green summer.
Sister Kerry O’Reilly
The 2016 Monastic Institute took place in July of this year, hosted by St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville with a day at St. Benedict’s Monastery in St. Joseph, MN. The focus was on “Monastic Profession” and the meaning that our promises have in shaping the rest of our lives. Abbot John Klassen and Prioress Michaela Hedican shared the presentation time in each session, weaving wonderfully varied and yet somehow coherent patterns around the theme of each of the talks.
Several sisters and two oblates we able to attend the Institute. All of us were utterly taken with the talks, and their applicability for oblates as much as for professed monastics. The links below should successfully take you to the talks, while the little sound icon (if it shows up on your computer) will just play the particular talk through your browser. Most are about an hour in length.
Audio recordings now online
The audio recordings of the talks are now available online on the Monastic Institute 2016 web page.
July 3, 2016 (Sunday):
Where We Have Been — Where We Are Going: Today’s Context for Monastic Profession
July 6, 2016 (Wednesday):
Entering into Kenosis: Relational Fidelity in Monastic Life
July 7, 2016 (Thursday):
Monastic Profession as a Way to Fullness in Christ
2018 Federation Chapter Schedule
- July 25 – 30 with the 25th and 30th as traveling days.
- Annunciation Monastery
- Bismarck, ND