Blog

Blog

Seeking God at this place of New Clairvaux, we are a community of Cistercian monks living the Rule of Saint Benedict. We witness God's love for the world according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ by a life of prayer, labor, and sustainable stewardship of our resources in a simplicity and openness to the signs of the times. Our monastery welcomes all people in the spirit of hospitality, and engages others in collaborative relationships.

Abbot Paul Mark shares on current and future days:

“The daily news is all about the pandemic and its tragic consequences.  It impacts us all.  Here in the monastery we offer a prayer daily for protection all people, a resolution to the pandemic and for the deceased and their loved ones.

            But here is some Good News, Pentecost is coming!  This Mystery of Salvation celebrates the beginning of the faith community we call church.  The church flows from the side of the pierced Jesus that spews forth his precious water and blood,

Grretings Blog Viewers!  Our Br. Christopher reflects on Mary’s Month:  “Traditionally the month of May is known as ‘Mary’s Month’ among Catholics, a time of devotion and reflection on Our Blessed Mother.  For some, Catholics are too focused on Mary, to the exclusion of Jesus, they say.  Oh, how wrong headed they are!

                If we truly want to know Jesus we must look at Why He came, what He has done for the human race: He came to unite us to Himself, human and divine, to unite us to His Divinity through His humanity.  He achieved this goal in a superlative way in the one with the most unique and special relationship with Him: the one He choose to by His own human mother.

May 12, 1974. 

Does that date mean anything to you?  Probably not; some of you reading this weren’t even born yet, and for others it was just another day, leaving no imprint on the recollection.

For me, it was the Greatest Day of my life.  It was the day of my baptism, at St. Rose of Lima parish in Santa Rosa, CA. 

Fr. Paul Mark helps us appreciate the great St. Joseph, patron of contemplatives:

“The Church celebrates two special days in honor of St. Joseph each year: the Solemnity of St. Joseph the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary on March 19 and the memorial of St. Joseph the Worker on May 1.  Pope Blessed Pius IX had named Joseph the patron of the Universal Church in the mid-nineteenth century.  With the title Universal Patron of the Church you might think the Christian faithful has held Saint Joseph in great esteem from time immemorial.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

I thought I’d give an update about how things are going here at New Clairvaux during CoVid-19: What is life like at the monastery during the current pandemic?

Br. Christopher shares some thoughts on Divine Mercy:

Hello Blog Guests!   Fr. Placid describes Acedia, its effects and remedy:

Dear Blog Viewers, We would like to share with you a brief excerpt from an open letter to the monks and nuns concerning the CoVid-19 pandemic by the Abbot General of the Order of Cistercians, Dom Mauro-Giuseppe Lepori, O. Cist, whom we have had the honor of receiving at the Abbey on two occasions:

             As we are journeying in Lent, in this month of March we also commemorate a special day on March 19 for Saint Joseph, the foster father of Jesus. In the infancy narrative, Matthew’s Gospel tells us that St. Joseph was a righteous man (Mt 1:19).

In last week’s blog I shared on the Joy of Lent. One of the ways the Constitution of our Order describes our Trappist-Cistercian life is one of “joyful penitence”.  Usually people do not immediately associate penance with joy!  Penance, self-denial and mortifications may be more readily associated with sorrow and pain and seen as a burden to be avoided or at best a duty to be endured.  Certainly sorrow for sin, what the monastic tradition calls ‘Penthos’, a sorrow leading to Compunction of Heart, is an essential element.  However another element of the practice of penance is truly