The 54th General Chapter of the American Cassinese Congregation which convened at St. Benedict’s Abbey in Atchison, Kansas, U.S.A., from 19-24 June 2022 elected Father Jonathan R. Licari, O.S.B., a monk of Saint John’s Abbey in Collegeville, Minnesota, as the new abbot president on 23 June 2022.
Father Jonathan was ordained a priest on 15 May 1976 and then joined the monastery, making his first profession of monastic vows on 11 July 1982. He holds a masters degree in philosophy and a doctorate in canon law. He taught at St. John’s School of Theology Seminary and University from 1982-2001. Fr. Jonathan served as both sub-prior and prior of the monastery as well as pastor of the abbey parish, St. John the Baptist in Collegeville; Holy Name Parish in Medina; and Seven Dolors in Albany, Minnesota. He has provided canonical services in the Dioceses of Duluth and St. Cloud and served on the American Cassinese Congregation’s canonical affairs committee. Fr. Johnathan also served as headmaster of St. John’s Preparatory School in Collegeville from 2013-2018 and for the past three years as administrator of Mary Mother of the Church in Richmond, Virginia. Fr. Jonathan brings 37 years of administrative experience in monastic and school governance to his new office as abbot president.
The solemn celebration of the Eucharist and the conferral of the Rite of Abbatial Blessing upon the new Abbot President Jonathan R. Licari, O.S.B., J.C.D., took place the same evening of the election. The Most Rev. Elias R. Lorenzo, O.S.B., D.D., V.G., auxiliary bishop of Newark and former abbot president himself, presided and preached at the celebration and conferred the Church’s blessing on the new abbot president. A festive supper followed by Evening Prayer in the Abbey Church concluded the day. Ad multos annos!