Saturday, May 10, 2008

New Monastery Established in San Antonio, TX from Mother Angelica's Order

Please pray for the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, who have established a new monastery at Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic parish in Texas. It is an Anglican-use parish in the Diocese of San Antonio.

Five nuns of the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration will be arriving in the parish sometime in May, when they will be taking up residence in our St. Joseph House. Pictured here, they are (l. to r.) Sr. Marie St. Clare, Sr. Rose Marie,
Sr. Grace Marie, Sr. Mary Peter and Sr. Elizabeth Marie.

Fr. Christopher G. Phillips announced made an announcement back in February which gives us a little more background:

His Eminence, Franc Cardinal Rodé, Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life has communicated permission to establish a monastery for the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration here in San Antonio.

We can now prepare in earnest for the arrival of five nuns from Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Hanceville, Alabama. They will be taking up residence in our St. Joseph Parish House. There is, of course, a chapel there with the Blessed Sacrament, although they will be attending Mass ordinarily here at the parish. We’re looking forward to welcoming the Sisters as part of our extended “Atonement Family,” and we need to pray for them as they get ready to leave their present beloved monastery to begin this new work.
There are many good things at the Our Lady of Atonement website, including Catholic tracts. You can probably stay abreast of what is happening there through the parish blog.

Any Catholic is free to assist at an Anglican-use Catholic Mass. So, if you live in the area or are passing through San Antonio, check it out.

Recall what I said when the "Phoenix 5" left Hanceville for the Diocese of Phoenix to establish a new Monastery at the request of Bishop Thomas J. Olmstead: The surest sign that a religious order is graced by the Holy Spirit is when so many vocations require it to branch out. I don't know what the limit is on Poor Clare communities, but cloisters do not typically have as many sisters as does Mother Angelica's order so something had to give. That is, sending sisters out to establish new monasteries. I am assuming these will be cloistered, but someone correct me if I am wrong.

A similar thing is happening with the Mary, Mother of the Eucharist Dominicans in Ann Arbor, Michigan (but they may not be establishing new orders as opposed to being assigned out at parishes), and I'm sure others. In fact, if anyone is aware of other communities spreading out like this, drop me a message in the combox or email me at

As a side note, Cardinal Rode also made an excellent statement about some clergy becoming too worldly. The same can be said of men and women in certain religious orders.

A good bishop will always seek a contemplative and/or monastic community to work within his diocese. The world cannot begin to comprehend what graces come to a diocese from the prayers and sacrifices of these fine men and women.

I should also mention that many bishops have made requests of Mother's community, as well as others like the Mary Mother of the Eucharist Dominicans, but they simply cannot respond to all requests, and cannot do too many such moves quickly. Each of these communities will draw more vocations by their example. Young people not previously exposed to them will hopefully hear God's voice above the noise of the world if they are called.

As a reminder, please pray for the five men being ordained as I write this post, at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Detroit. CTND Detroit will likely rebroadcast it many times in the coming weeks and months.

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