Monastic Vocation Discernment

Welcome to the website for the Office of Monastery Vocations for Saint Meinrad Archabbey. Since you have landed here, you are probably discerning a religious vocation and wondering if you might be called to be a monk. Good.

The Catholic Church needs faithful and generous men who will accept the challenge of moving a little apart in order to seek God and to share the fruits of their prayer, study, and labor with the rest of the Church and the world as only monks are able to do.

These pages will help you to better understand what a Benedictine monk is and how the monks of Saint Meinrad Archabbey are. The best description of a monk is perhaps found in the litany prayed over a monk when he takes his solemn vows:

May he be blameless in life.

May he be strong in temptation.

May he be wise and humble.

May he be steadfast in prayer.

May he be learned in Holy Scripture.

May he be distinguished for obedience.

May he be known for compassion.

May he be diligent and skilled in his work.

May he be serious and cheerful.

May he be established in peace.

Men who are discerning a religious vocation often wonder if they are good enough, strong enough and holy enough for this life. Lay those fears aside. The newcomer is not expected to be holy already; he must simply have the desire for holiness. St. Benedict writes in his Rule:

"Seeking his workman in a multitude of people, the Lord calls out to him and lifts his voice again: Is there anyone here who yearns for life and desires to see good days? If you hear this and your answer is 'I do,' God then directs these words to you: If you desire true and eternal life, keep your tongue free from vicious talk and your lips from all deceit; turn away from evil and do good; let peace be your quest and aim."

(RB, Prologue, vs. 14-17)