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Abbey News: May 3, 2015

Episcopal Retreatant

Bishop Gratian [1]
We are happy to have Mar Gratian Mundadan, a member of the order of Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI) and retired Bishop of Binjor, India with us for an extended monastic retreat. He has been looking forward to making a monastic retreat for quite some time but was unable to do so because of his varied ministries. Bishop Mundadan made first profession of vows in the CMI Congregation in May of 1958 and was appointed Bishop of Binjor, India by Pope Paul VI in February 1977.

Having resigned upon reaching the age of 75 he is now free to realize his wish. Bishop Gratian has already spent an extended time in retreat at our mother house, Gethsemani, and will be with us for a month or more.

Dedication of New Organ

Ben Saunders at organ [2]
Before celebrating Vespers of the day this past Thursday we had the official dedication and blessing of our new Skrabal organ in our renovated church. After Vespers we had an hour long gala recital with accomplished musician Ben Saunders at the organ. Ben, Director of Music for the diocese of Leeds, England, was in this country for a meeting at Notre Dame and graciously accepted theinvitation to join us for the dedication. You’ll find a brief biography on the Benjamin Saunders [3] page.

After the recital there was a social in the monastic refectory for those who joined us for the occasion including several of those connected with the renovation project including architects, contractors, employees, friends and neighbors, family members and Bill Bartolas who has been coaching us in the chant. The day ended praying the office of Compline.

Lectio Notebook

We must pray not only with our affectivity and our will; we must pray with our whole being, not least of all our understanding and our intellect. Prayer must be nourished by study and instruction if it is not to fall prey to subjective fantasy and whim.

The temple, therefore, could also be called a “house of doctrine”. Judaeo-Christian prayer has always been characterized by its deep rootedness in revelation – what God has told us about himself that we could never have discovered on our own. Indeed, Christian prayer is solely a response, in many different forms, to the words God has first spoken to us.

The very best prayers, therefore, are the Psalms and the Our Father, because these consist of sacred words that the Holy Spirit himself puts in our mouths.

Fire of Mercy
Erasmo Leiva-Merikakis