Last week Pope Benedict XVI visited the Carthusian monastery of Sts. Stephen and Bruno at Serra San Bruno. Outside the monastery, he addressed the faithful from the local area who had gathered there to see him, reminding them of the great privilege of having a “citadel of the Spirit” in their region. The Pope added:
“Monasteries have an important, I would say indispensable, role. Their purpose today is to ‘improve’ the environment, in the sense that sometimes the air we breathe in our societies is unhealthy, it is polluted by a non-Christian mentality, at times even a non-human mentality, because it is dominated by economic interests, concerned only with worldly things and lacking a spiritual dimension.
“In such a climate not only God but also our fellow man is pushed to the margins, and we do not commit ourselves to the common good. Monasteries, however, are models of societies which have God and fraternal relations at their core. We have great need of them in our time.”
The Holy Father concluded his remarks by exhorting the faithful “to treasure the great spiritual tradition of this place, and seek to put it into practice in your daily lives.”
For videos from the Holy Father’s visit, including the celebration of Vespers, click here. Story courtesy of the Vatican Information Service.