Our Father Immediate Dom Jean-Marc Chené of Bellefontaine Abbey in France is with us for the biennial visitation of our community. As the Cistercian Constitutions state:
The Father Immediate is to watch over the progress of his daughter houses. While respecting the autonomy of the daughter house he is to help and support the abbot in the exercise of his pastoral charge and to foster concord in the community. If he notices there a violation of a precept of the Rule or of the Order, he is to try with humility and charity and having consulted the local abbot, to remedy the situation.
Each of the monks will have an opportunity to meet with Dom Jean-Marc to speak about his sense of the current state of the monastery. After he has visited with each monk and consulted with the Abbot, Dom Jean-Marc presents his summation, called the Visitation Card, to the entire community and gives his impressions of the graces we have received and those areas of our life that may need improvement. Tomorrow morning we will celebrate the Mass of the Holy Spirit begging the Lord's enlightenment as we begin this important process.