Monks seek God
and respond to Him
through prayer. Prayer makes the
monk aware that:
God is not only found
but also in our daily encounters with others. As men of
faith, we recognize the mystery of Christ's coming; and through our monastic prayer, we
welcome Him into our lives.
expresses itself most explicitly in community prayer:
what St. Benedict calls the "Work of God." We unify all aspects of our daily lives in a humble response
to God at morning prayer, midday prayer, Eucharist, and evening prayer. This
prayer is filled with praise, adoration, and thanksgiving to God, celebrating the
mysteries of His wondrous deeds in Christ Jesus. Communal prayer serves as a
springboard for our individual, private prayer. Traditionally, monastic
prayer has always been rooted in the Psalms.
It is in community that we express our
consciousness of being God's creatures called to the glorious destiny of the Kingdom. At
the Eucharist, our community celebrates the deepest dimensions of its existence and
purpose, while confessing and experiencing the mystery of faith and hope in
Our lives are stamped with the mark of pilgrims. We know that at times our prayer will
be distracted, but, nonetheless, we continue to "put on the new man," longing to
bring the whole world to Christ's life and service. We realize that our prayer is not
simply a matter of praying from time to time, alternating with other activities, but
rather a matter of directing our whole lives to this end. By our presence at public prayer
and our attention to our individual prayer lives, we remind one another of what God has
done, proclaim what He is doing, and announce what He will accomplish in the future.
In step with today's profoundly human and radically Christian concerns, the monk takes up his daily work:
full of hope and promise,
service to his brothers in community, and to the Church and
the world at large. A monastic community is not, by its nature, bound to specific
endeavors. However, work has always been essential to the lives of monks.
Rule of Benedict reminds us that our work is not a career or profession but a holy service. Work forms an
integral part of our lives. In it, we praise God, help bring creation to completion, and
support our community and the needy.
The apostolate of education has for centuries been
one principal work of
Benedictine communities. Continuing this tradition, the monks of Saint Martin's Abbey,
together with their lay colleagues, are involved in a wide variety of work in Saint
Martin's University, serving as administrators, teachers, auxiliary personnel, and
counselors. Several monks are also actively engaged in pastoral work in archdiocesan
parishes and hospitals. Their responsibilities include celebrating the sacraments,
preaching, and organizing and conducting parish activities.