Next to this great duty of religious worship, the "Opus Dei," as St. Benedict himself described the Divine Office, the chief "community work" of a modern monastery is education -- in those countries where it is not proscribed. This work too was undertaken by the monks from the very first, and the Benedictine abbeys were the only schools in Europe for several centuries. No one at the present day requires to be convinced of the growing importance of the education problem, or of the necessity for combining sound religious' training with the advanced and ever increasing standard of knowledge which modern progress in science and thought imperatively demands. Should the Church fail in this respect, a godless State will train and educate the young, inevitably producing, in the course of time, a godless race.
The danger, however, is fully realized, and Benedictines, in company with other religious bodies, are keenly alive to their grave responsibilities in this matter. The young people in a school conducted by Benedictine monks receive a religious training well suited to meet the varied difficulties and evils of the present day. With monastics as their teachers, the students are in daily converse with monastics whose profession is religion that proclaims separation from the world and belief in the greater importance of things divine. Youth are constantly brought face to face with the Church's glorious liturgy and made familiar with the Church's saints. The work of education is, in fact, most truly apostolic, and in this spirit it is carried on.
OSB Index * General Information * Saint Benedict