A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

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Location: Virginia, United States

Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Benedictine Blessings: Monastery of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Vermont

Now it's time for an American Benedictine cloister! The Monastery of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Westfield, VT is a real gem. A newer community, it was founded in 1981 as a foundation of Abbaye de Sainte-Marie in Canada. This monastery is also a member of the very solid Congregation of Solesmes.

While the website of the Monastery of the Immaculate Heart of Mary's website is simpler than those of the previous featured monasteries in this series, it has alot of great content. I really like it's integration of quotes fron Scripture and the Rule of Saint Benedict in the description of the spirituality of cloisters and the Benedictine Order. Also, check out the "Modern Desert" page on the website- I thought that was a very nice term for a cloister.

I'll end with a beautiful quote from the web page:

At the very outset of his Rule for monasteries, Saint Benedict appeals to the innate desire for JOY present in every heart:

Is there anyone who yearns for life and desires to see good days? (Prologue to the Rule of Saint Benedict, RB prol.)

But true joy is a CHALLENGE: it can blossom only in the soil of self-forgetfulness and self-giving to love, especially to the only LOVE than can completely fill the human heart. To the unfathomable love of God for us—
God so loved the world (each one of us) that He gave His only Son (Jn 3:16)—


Blogger romy said...

i visited IHM back in november and was overwhelmed by the sense of sacredness present in everyday details, and the sense of family. so glad you've discovered the community, chiara.

(btw i came over from chez zadok and am very happy to have found your site !)

9:29 PM  

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