OF SPECIAL INTEREST TO ABA MEMBERS
You will soon be receiving your information for nominating members to the ABA board of directors. Please give some thought to which members you might like to have represent you and also to your own willingness to serve in this capacity if you are nominated.
Please make note of a change of address for the secretary of the American Benedictine Academy. Send all correspondence to:
Sister Jeanne Giese, OSB
110 28th Avenue SE
Watertown, SD 57201
It is not too soon to begin planning to attend the 1998 convention of the American Benedictine Academy, which will hold its assembly marking the 50th anniversary of the Academy at Saint Vincent's Archabbey, Latrobe, PA, August 9-12, 1998.
This year's theme will be "Hospitality: Prism for the 21st Century." In preparation for the biennial gathering, several persons have submitted pre-convention reflection papers on the topic, which were made available over the past year to anyone wishing to do some personal reflection or discussion. The President's column for each issue of the AMN over the last two years has also featured thoughts on a variety of dimensions of this theme.
Various forms of engaging in aspects of hospitality will be offered by speakers, including major addresses, responses, panels and computer technology presentations. Demetrius Dumm, OSB, will open the convention with his keynote address: "Hospitality: Prism for the 21st Century Entertaining Divine Presence according to the Rule of Benedict"; the response to this address will be given by Patricia Kirk, OSB. Rosemary Rader, OSB, will speak on "Contemporary Hospitality: Where the Present Becomes the Future," to which John Klassen, OSB, will respond. Genevieve Glen, OSB, will challenge us with "Dangerous Angels: The Demand of Liturgical Hospitality," with response by Placid Solari, OSB.
Richard Oliver OSB and Diana Seago OSB will offer reflections on hospitality and the Internet by means of their talk, "The Pilgrim's Way in Cyberspace." This team will also offer an optional session for viewing various Benedictine sites on the World Wide Web. A session called "Field Report" comprised of Paul Schwietz OSB and Carol Ann Wassmuth OSB will explore the topic of hospitality to the environment from their personal experiences of listening and responding to the land.
The meeting will begin on Sunday afternoon, August 9, with registration and section meetings. Although there are three official sections: Monastic Researchers, Archivists and Visual Artists other special interest groups are welcome to gather for informal meetings by requesting space from the host community. The opening on Sunday evening will feature a presentation of Benedictine art. The archabbey will have rooms available for Saturday night stay for those traveling by air.
Besides the formal presentations, there will also be tours of the archabbey grounds, including the Gristmill, Archabbey Studios, and the library with special exhibits of artifacts and art. Other optional activities will include a tour of St. Emma's Monastery in nearby Greensburg, PA, or of the archabbey wetlands project. Participants are requested not to bring items to sell at the ABA convention, however, ABA publications and tapes will be on sale.
Ample time between sessions allows for participants to engage in informal dialogue and fun, so that there is balance of prayer, learning and leisure. The convention will host its biennial business meeting, where status reports on the various projects of the ABA are shared and members will elect the board which will represent them over the next two years. The Academy board is a seven-member team, which coordinates all the activities of the ABA, whose purpose is to foster Benedictine monastic values. This board plans the convention, oversees the publication of the American Monastic Newsletter, offers funds to individuals engaged in monastic scholarship and works effectively to promote Benedictine research, spirituality and praxis.
The ABA convention is open to anyone with an interest in Benedictinism. Almost two hundred men and women, Benedictine, Cistercian, oblates, scholars and members of other religious orders generally attend. This variety makes for one of the riches of the convention experience. One need not be an ABA member to attend, but membership provides discounted registration and ongoing participation in the work of the ABA. Registration materials (.gif) and schedule (.gif) are available for printing. For more information or hardcopy registration forms, call 1-724-532-6600 or write to:
c/o Brother David Kelly, OSB
Saint Vincent Archabbey
300 Fraser Purchase Road
Latrobe, PA 15650-2667