American-Cassinese Congregation

The Constitutions and the Directory


Part I: Matters Pertaining to the Individual Monasteries

Chapter III: The Growth and Formation of the Monastic Community

Article 4: The Formation of Monks

C 56. All members of the community are to be conscious of their responsibility in the formation of their junior brothers, particularly by their prayer and example of fidelity. They are to cooperate with the master of novices and the master of junior monks and their programs of formation. Likewise, they are to respect the established nature and measure of contact with the novices and junior monks.

C 57.1. During the time of temporary profession, a monk is under the special care of the master of junior monks, who must be a capitular of the monastery, appointed by the abbot after consulting the council of seniors.

C 57.2. It is the primary responsibility of the master of junior monks, under the direction of the abbot, to ensure that an adequate program of formation is provided for the junior monks whereby their personal growth is stimulated and their theological development is fostered. Likewise, they are to be provided with the opportunity to deepen their awareness of and appreciation for the basic elements of the monastic life and the life of their own community. The master of junior monks is to take care that the activities of the junior monks are in accord with their program of formation.

D 57. Each year the master of junior monks is to present a report on each of the junior monks to the chapter.

C 58. Each monk has the personal responsibility of continuing his own spiritual, doctrinal, and practical formation throughout his entire life. The abbot is to take care that the resources and time are available for this pursuit.

C 59. Spiritual conferences are to be given to the community regularly by the abbot or, on occasion, by another whom he appoints to do so. In addition, occasional conferences on theological, monastic, scriptural, and liturgical subjects should be provided.

C 60. Each year a retreat is to be given at the monastery. The abbot is to ensure that all monks have the opportunity to make an annual retreat.

C 61.1. The same Lord who calls a person to the monastic life may also call a monk to the diaconate or the priesthood. Discernment of a vocation to Holy Orders takes place throughout the period of monastic and theological formation. After appropriate consultation, it is the abbot who presents a monk for ordination to the diaconate or priesthood.

C 61.2. Monks preparing for Holy Orders are to follow a course of studies approved by competent Church authority. Their theological and pastoral formation must be firmly rooted in their specifically monastic vocation.


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