“If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for my sake shall find it.”
The candidate for a monastery is convinced that he must live his life in conformity with the Gospel precepts.
Many of us who have chosen this path didn’t arrive thinking we were particularly virtuous or even worthy to become a monk. But over time, we find that God has called us to seek Him only — by constant union through prayer and working for our community as a form of prayer in action.
The Benedictine vocation is dedicated to the service of God and neighbor. Guided through prayer, we learn that true happiness can only be gained through humility, self-denial, obedience, patience and mutual charity. A monk strives to give glory to God by becoming, at last, not self-centered, but God-centered.
It was for this reason that St. Benedict wrote his Rule, and why Benedictine monasteries exist. Benedict withdrew from the world to follow Christ wholeheartedly. Today, as in the past, Christ calls some to give up all things and follow Him through prayer, spiritual direction and quiet listening to the stirrings of the Spirit.