World Day of Prayer
Today we join the Church throughout the world in prayer for the Consecrated Life. In 1997, Pope Saint John Paul II instituted a day of prayer for women and men in consecrated life. This celebration is attached to the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord on February 2nd. Therefore, the World Day for Consecrated Life  will be celebrated in the Church on Thursday, February 2, 2017 and in parishes on the weekend of February 4-5, 2017.
On the Feast of the Presentation, Feb. 2nd, our observer, Fr. Gregory Hamill, completed his observership and began his six month postulancy taking the name of h is patron, St. John Vianney. Fr. John Vianney comes to us from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia where he served as a priest since his ordination, May 1994, as pastor, parochial vicar and chaplain.
In a brief ceremony in the novitiate on the eve of the Presentation Fr. John Vianney was blessed with his new name and received the postulant’s smock. This brings our novitiate members to four. Along with the pending arrival of two observers later this year this makes for the most activity in our novitiate in fifteen years.
Recently our ‘poet in residence’, Fr. Isaac Slater (John Slater), published a new collection of his poems, Lean. Peggy Rosenthal, director of Poetry Retreats and writer on poetry as a spiritual resource, published a lively review of the collection on her blog at John Slater’s Lean. 
The book is available through our on-line store at: Monks Specialty Bakery. Speaking of specialty bakery you might be interested in checking out the new, popular cheese crisps and the new biscotti flavors currently on sale .
Since Jesus is a good and loving shepherd, his concern reaches out to all the sheep, wherever they may be. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd (John 10:16).
The kind of love that animates Jesus, and should animate his followers, can never be satisfied with freely receiving the gift of life. It must constantly reach out to others so that they too may share in this ultimate gift. And this union of life will overcome all the negative and divisive forces that lead to death.
These words take on a special significance for those who are rightly distressed by the disunity that exists between Christians. And the principle seems to be clear: Do not be so concerned about diversity; be concerned rather about the lack of love.
A Mystical Portrait of Jesus
Demetrius R. Dumm, OSB