Coming and Going
Last Tuesday Fr. Stephen returned from his Cistercian Studies Quarterly meeting at Gethsemani all ready to take up his new duties as associate editor. But that will have to wait a bit. Tomorrow, he and Fr. Gerard will depart for Assisi, Italy to take part in the Order’s General Chapter which will be in session from September 6th to the 27th. and return a day or two afterwards. There’s a brief description on the Order’s web site of the purpose of the General Chapter. 
This past Wednesday after two years and six months of vocational discernment as a member of our novitiate Fr. Sanjay Lopes, S.D.B. left the community after coming to a firm discernment that he is not called to cenobitic monastic life after all. He has returned to his native India where he will continue the discernment process.
As much as we miss him and are saddened by his departure we can be grateful that he has been able to come to a final decision and is at peace with it. Our prayers accompany him as he responds to what he feels is the will of God for him.
Message From Monks’ Bread Bakery
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To begin to discern differences in one’s life a person must be attentive to what lies within, to what brings and supports peace and tranquility or what produces and reinforces confusing, destructive behavior. This attentiveness means concretely taking time to listen to one’s inner life.
It presumes a discipline of being in or creating a quiet environment in which a person can begin to recognize what is happening internally. It presupposes that while any discernment process might necessarily include dialogue with others, it must include, above all, a dialogue with oneself-in relationship with God.
Silence and solitude can provide this conversation. Such attentive listening can lead to less illusions and self-delusions (signs of the devil according to St. Anthony of the Desert). It can also lead to greater knowledge of one’s true self, a self more grounded in truth, more capable of living in reality.
Finding the Monk Within