We rejoice with our Brother John Kim as he makes his Solemn Profession this morning in the Abbey church. Faithful and most generous at work, gifted with many practical skills and artistic gifts, John cares well for his brothers in community as he seeks to honor the Lord Jesus in all things.
By monastic profession a brother is consecrated to God and joined with the monastic community that receives him. At this time the consecration received in the sacraments of baptism and confirmation is renewed and given vitality. The brother binds himself in faithful stability to a sincere conversion of life through ready obedience until death.
By the vow of stability within his community a brother obliges himself to make constant use of the means of the spiritual craft there, trusting in the providence of God who has called him to this place and to this group of brothers.
By the vow of conversatio morum or fidelity to monastic life a brother who, in the simplicity of his heart, seeks God by the following of the Gospel, binds himself to the practice of Cistercian discipline. He retains nothing at all for himself, not even authority over his own body. He renounces the capacity of acquiring and possessing goods for himself. For the sake of the Kingdom of heaven, he makes profession of perfect continence and celibacy.
By the vow of obedience a brother desiring to live under a rule and an abbot promises to fulfill all that lawful superiors command in accordance with these Constitutions. In thus renouncing his own will he follows the example of Christ who was obedient until death, and commits himself to the school of the Lord's service.
Photograph by Brother Brian. Lines from The Constitutions of the Monks.