Autumn Conferences 
This past Friday afternoon we had the first of five conferences as part of our on-going formation program. This year’s speaker is Dr. Matthew G. Kuhner, Ph.D, associate professor of systematic Theology at St. Bernard’s School of Theology and Ministry in Rochester, NY.
In his very lively and informative opening conference Dr. Kuhner introduced and outlined his topic for future conferences: ‘Mary as Figure, Archetype and Eschatological Fulfillment of the Church – Towards a Marian Ecclesiology’. A very Cistercian and relevant topic for sure. He also touched on the importance today’s younger generation places on authenticity.
Meeting of Superiors
Tomorrow Abbot Gerard departs for our monastery of New Clarivaux in Vina, California, for several day’s meeting of all the U. S. Cistercian Superiors. They are gathering at Vina to join the community in a special celebration of the dedication of the community’s new, very unique Church.
This remarkable Church was constructed with building stones from the Spanish Cistercian monastery, Santa Maria de Ovila which was built in 1167 and found their way to California. Construction began in 2003 and was completed December of 2017. For a detailed story of this unique project visit the article Record Searchlight web page.  Abbot Gerard is due to return late Thursday night.
AUTUMN SLOWLY BUT SURELY UNFOLDS IN THE GENESEE VALLEY!
The disciple of Christ is called to witness to the new life in Christ – to testify, both by word and example, that Jesus has overcome sin and inaugurated the kingdom of God. As he explained this calling, Jesus also warned his disciples that the new life they were to manifest was radically different from life apart from God. The division Jesus spoke of occurs as the light in us becomes brighter, and the darkness around us and within us more full exposed.
If we want the light of Christ to shine, the darkness must give way – and this can sometimes be painful. Nevertheless, it is the calling of a disciple to maintain his or her allegiance to the Lord, and to let Christ’s word, like a two-edged sword, separate darkness from light.
At the same time, Jesus never leaves his disciples without the consolation of his love. They are comforted by knowing that as they share in his cross, they also share in his resurrection – both now and at the end of the ages.
Matthew – A Devotional Commentary
Leo Zanchettin, General Editor