Meath’s royal welcome for first monastery since Reformation times

27 Feb, 2017 | News

On Sunday 26 February Bishop Michael Smith, Bishop of Meath, presided at the canonical establishment of a new monastery at Silverstream Priory in the Diocese of Meath.

Silverstream is home to a community of eight male religious who follow the Rule of Saint Benedict.  The community came from Tulsa, USA, in 2012 and occupies the former residence of the Visitation Sisters in Stamullen, Co Meath.  The monastery is contemplative in nature, with a particular focus on the Liturgy and Eucharistic Adoration.  The community’s constitution and canonical norms were approved by the Holy See earlier this month.

Bishop Smith signed a Decree on 25 February, “erecting the Benedictine Monks of Perpetual Adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar as a monastic Institute of Consecrated Life of diocesan right in the Diocese of Meath”.  This Decree is believed to mark the first formal establishment of a monastic community in the Diocese of Meath since the suppression of the monasteries by Henry VIII in 1536.

Bishop Smith said, “The history of religious life has seen many developments over the centuries and I am delighted to recognise the unique presence of this new monastery in the Diocese of Meath.  Through their prayer, study and hospitality, the monks are ‘speaking to the heart’ and their quiet witness is a reminder that the Lord continues to provide the Church with new gifts and grace.”

Yesterday Bishop Smith celebrated Mass in Silversteam Priory accompanied by Very Reverend Dom Mark Kirby, Conventual Prior of the Institute. Pictured are four monks of Silverstream priory (l to r) Dom Elijah, Dom Mark Daniel Kirby, Dom Finian and Dom Benedict Andersen.

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