Swiss-American Benedictine Congregation

 

RITUAL OF MONASTIC PROFESSION

1984

 

II: 12-14

PART II

RITE OF TEMPORARY PROFESSION

I. GATHERING OF CANDIDATES

12. Temporary profession may take place at either Mass or Vespers. If it takes place at Mass, after the Gospel or homily, the novices gather before the abbot or are escorted to him by the novicemaster. The novicemaster may present them to the abbot, saying:

Father Abbot, these men have been tested during the past year in the novitiate and persist in their resolve.
 

II. REQUEST

13. Turning to the novices, the abbot asks:

What, then, is your request?

They answer: We seek admittance to your way of life.

Or: We seek the mercy of God and fellowship in this community.

They may prostrate as they answer.

14. Instead of the above question and reply the novices may state their request in their own words. Or the request may be omitted.

[page 4 ends]

II: 15-18

III. ADMONITION

15. If a homily has been preached after the Gospel, the abbot or novicemaster may read Chapter 72 of the Rule, introducing it by saying:

As you reach the end of your novitiate, listen once again to the words of our father, whose rule of life you seek to embrace.

16. He then shows the Rule to the novices and says:

Behold the law under which you are choosing to serve.
If you can keep it, enter.
If not, you are free to leave.

17. The homily may be omitted after the Gospel and the abbot may preach at this point. After developing the scriptural readings he shows the Rule to the novices and recites the formula given in no. 16.
 

IV. PROMISE

18. After this the abbot poses the following questions to the novices:

Tell me, then:
Are you resolved to renounce the ways of the world and adhere to this community?

The novices reply: I am.

Are you resolved to persevere in the monastic way of life?

The Novices reply: I am.

Are you resolved to practice obedience, renouncing even your own will?

The novices reply:  I am.

Do you promise for three years, stability in this community, fidelity to the monastic way of life, and obedience according to the Rule of Saint Benedict and the Constitutions of the Swiss-American
Benedictine Congregation?

The novices reply: I do.

The abbot may add: May God who began this good work in you bring it to completion.

The community may respond: Amen.

[page 5 ends]

II: 19-23

V. READING OF PROFESSION DOCUMENT

19. In the customary manner each novice reads the profession document he has written beforehand signs it and presents it to the abbot.

20. A typical text is:

In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I, Brother ___________________________________
promise for three years
stability in this community.
fidelity to the monastic way of life,
and obedience
according to the Rule of Saint Benedict
and the Constitutions of the Swiss-American Benedictine Congregation;
this before God and his Saints, whose relics are here,
and in the presence of the Right Reverend __________________,
abbot of this monastery, and of its monks.
In witness thereof
I have written this document with my own hand and
signed it here at __________________________ Abbey.
in _______________________________________
on this day of the month of ___________________
in the year of our Lord _______________________
 

VI. SIGN OF PROFESSION

21. The abbot confers upon the newly professed the vesture proper to first profession.

22. If it is to be blessed, he prays:

Father of mercy,
you sent your Son in the clothing of our mortality.

Bless this habit (garment) which our forefathers,
who renounced the ways of the world,
ordered to be worn as a sign of innocence and humility.
May those who receive it today
put on the Lord Jesus Christ
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.

23. Whether the vesture has been blessed or not, the abbot may say as he presents it to the newly professed:

May the Lord strip you of the old man and his way of life
and clothe you with the new man,
created in his image, made just and holy by truth.

[page 6 ends]

II: 24-26

VII. KISS OF PEACE

24. The abbot and community may give the kiss of peace to the newly professed.

 

VIII. CONCLUSION

25. If temporary profession takes place at Mass, the Eucharistic celebration resumes with the general intercessions in which mention is made of the newly professed.

26. If temporary profession takes place at Vespers, the rite begins after the reading and is followed by the Canticle of Mary. The newly professed may be mentioned in intercessory prayers at the conclusion of the Hour.

[page 7 ends]

Part III

 

Rt. Rev. Peter Eberle OSB
Abbot President
Swiss-American Congregation
Mount Angel Abbey
St. Benedict, OR 97373
Tel. 503-845-3304; fax: 503-845-3202
E-mail: abbotp @ mountangelabbey.org

 

Home

 

Rev. 10-Mar-2007 | Contact | www.osb.org/swissam/ritual/ritual02.html