Beginning Our New Church

Beginning Our New Church

After many, many years of patient waiting for the Lord's Time, the monks of New Clairvaux Abbey began worship in our new/reconstructed Spanish midieval church on Monday, Jan. 29, 2018.  The seed of the project began in mid 1950's when a young Fr. Thomas Davis was being driven to the foundation in Vina from our motherhouse in Gethsamne to join the brothers here, and on the way from the airport viewed the delapedated ancient stones gathering Moss in Golden Gate Park, and being told they were from a monastery of our Cistercian Order that had been carted to the U.S. by William Randolph Hearst for an electic building project, and abandoned as the project never materialized.  Fr. Thomas never forgot those stones, and when he became abbot himself asked the city of San Francisco if we could try to reconstruct the building.  The stones began being shipped to Vina in the mid 1990's, and re-construction commenced in late 2003.  

What does this project mean for us?  Why take such pains to bring this building back to life?  It is our past, and our future.  It is a connection to past, our patrimony, to our brothers who chanted the praise and love to God for centuries in this very space before being silenced, and that praise and love being renewed again in our time.  It is a Resurrection story.  These stones were dead, it was over, impossible.  And now they reverberate with song, ALIVE.  God is faithful.     



Cistercian monastic life gives primary place of chanting the Opus Dei or Divine Office in community as well as personal time spent in sacred reading which fulfill the monk's sacred duty of seeking God.


Cistercian monastic life allows rooms for guests because all guests are to be received as Christ.  We never know if we have entertained angels.

Life in Common

Cistercian monastic life is communal:  We share all things in common as did the early Christian community so as to live in greater charity and union with Christ.