THE NEXT SIXTY YEARS
For over 70 years monks have lived and worked and more importantly prayed in Berryville, Virginia at Holy Cross Abbey. Comprised now of 11 monks, this Cistercian community, one of only 17 in the United States, carries on the historic and traditional work of prayer.
However contrary to popular opinion, it is not an isolated community interested only in its own welfare and well-being. Rather, Holy Cross Abbey remains a house of prayer for all people and a “school of the Lord’s service” (Rule of St. Benedict, Prologue 45, 46) where those looking to strengthen their relationship with God can find sustenance and tools to further enhance their personal life of prayer. In these 60 years literally thousands of people have experienced the beauty of monastic prayer and the contemplative life by visiting Holy Cross Abbey.
Now we must take care that this school of the Lord’s service continues its important work of prayer. We must be intentional in making sure the ongoing financial support needed to keep the Abbey running is acquired.
We must begin also to show men who have a contemplative heart that Holy Cross Abbey is a viable and vital community where they may more fully respond to God’s call and perhaps join the community as monks to forever live a life of obedience, stability and conversion of life (the Benedictine monastic vows).
And we must guarantee that the monastery is always there for the laypeople and clergy that come on retreat or to mass or to Divine Office or to just be present in the sacred space that is Holy Cross Abbey.
A Cistercian Community must pay its own way. There is no support coming from a diocese or the Order; every bill to be paid must be paid for by the community. We have our retreat house, bakery/gift shop, and natural cemetery, but these do not pay for everything. We must rely on our friends to support us in order to have what we need to keep HCA a viable and vibrant spiritual community.
You can make a one time gift or, better yet, you can become a Sustainer. Sustainers make gifts monthly through their debit or credit card. Either way, know that anything you can do to help Our Lady of the Holy Cross will be greatly appreciated and your friends the monks of this abbey send their thanks.
May you and yours have a great new year and know that the monastic community and lay staff of Holy Cross Abbey appreciate you and pray for you and are here for you, always.
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