Olivetans

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Depiction of an Olivetan monk, 16th century Portrait of an Olivetan Monk - Battista Franco (attributed).jpg
Depiction of an Olivetan monk, 16th century

The Olivetans, or the Order of Our Lady of Mount Olivet, are a monastic order formally recognised in 1344. They have formed the Olivetan Congregation within the Benedictine Confederation since 1960.

The Benedictine Confederation of the Order of Saint Benedict is the international governing body of the Order of Saint Benedict.

Contents

History

Foundation

Monte Oliveto Maggiore Monteolivetomaggiore02.jpg
Monte Oliveto Maggiore

The Order of Our Lady of Mount Olivet is a small Roman Catholic order, founded in 1313 by Bernardo Tolomei (born Giovanni Tolomei) along with two of his friends from the noble families of Siena, Patrizio Patrizi and Ambrogio Piccolomini. They initially lived as hermits in the "savage waste of Accona". The building of the monastery here began with the approbation of the foundation charter by Guido Tarlati, bishop of Arezzo (26 March 1319). [1]

Bernardo Tolomei Italian saint

Saint Bernardo Tolomei was an Italian Roman Catholic theologian and the founder of the Congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto. In the Roman Martyrology he is commemorated on August 20, but in the Benedictine calendar his optional memorial is celebrated on the previous day.

Siena Comune in Tuscany, Italy

Siena is a city in Tuscany, Italy. It is the capital of the province of Siena.

Piccolomini Surname list

Piccolomini is the name of an Italian noble family, which was prominent in Siena from the beginning of the 13th century till 18th century.

The name "Olivetan" comes from the name of the order's original hermitage, called Monte Oliveto in honour of Christ’s Passion. [1] The monastery later became known as "Monte Oliveto Maggiore" ("greater") to distinguish it from successive foundations at Florence, San Gimignano, Naples and elsewhere. It is still the mother house of the order or congregation.

Florence Capital and most populous city of the Italian region of Tuscany

Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with 383,084 inhabitants in 2013, and over 1,520,000 in its metropolitan area.

San Gimignano Comune in Tuscany, Italy

San Gimignano is a small walled medieval hill town in the province of Siena, Tuscany, north-central Italy. Known as the Town of Fine Towers, San Gimignano is famous for its medieval architecture, unique in the preservation of about a dozen of its tower houses, which, with its hilltop setting and encircling walls, form "an unforgettable skyline". Within the walls, the well-preserved buildings include notable examples of both Romanesque and Gothic architecture, with outstanding examples of secular buildings as well as churches. The Palazzo Comunale, the Collegiate Church and Church of Sant' Agostino contain frescos, including cycles dating from the 14th and 15th centuries. The "Historic Centre of San Gimignano" is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town also is known for saffron, the Golden Ham, and its white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, produced from the ancient variety of Vernaccia grape which is grown on the sandstone hillsides of the area.

Naples Comune in Campania, Italy

Naples is the regional capital of Campania and the third-largest municipality in Italy after Rome and Milan. In 2017, around 967,069 people lived within the city's administrative limits while its province-level municipality has a population of 3,115,320 residents. Its continuously built-up metropolitan area is the second or third largest metropolitan area in Italy and one of the most densely populated cities in Europe.

After the arrival of a number of new followers, the nascent community adopted the Rule of St. Benedict and was recognised by Pope Clement VI in 1344. [2] In 1408 Gregory XII gave them the extinct monastery of St. Justina at Padua, which they occupied until the institution there of the Benedictine reform. [1]

Today

Unlike many other Benedictine congregations, the Olivetans have a centralized structure, supervised by the abbot general at Monte Oliveto Maggiore. [3] Olivetan Benedictines wear a white habit.

The Olivetan monks run Bec Abbey in France, which was left in ruins in 1792 by the French Revolution. In 1948 Olivetans from the Monastery of Our Lady of Holy Hope at Mesnil-Saint-Loup and the Monastery of the Virgin Mary at Cormeilles-en-Parisis re-established the monastery at Bec.

Bec Abbey Benedictine monastic foundation in Normandy, France

Bec Abbey, formally the Abbey of Our Lady of Bec, is a Benedictine monastic foundation in the Eure département, in the Bec valley midway between the cities of Rouen and Bernay. It is located in Le Bec Hellouin, Normandy, France, and was the most influential abbey of the 12th-century Anglo-Norman kingdom.

France Republic with mainland in Europe and numerous oversea territories

France, officially the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.

In 1955, Benedictine monks from St. Benedict’s Abbey in Wisconsin took over the former Trappist monastery of Our Lady of Guadalupe Abbey in Pecos, New Mexico. In 1985, the monastery became part of the Olivetan congregation. The abbey offers retreats and spiritual direction. [4]

The Monastery of Christ Our Saviour was founded in 1980 in the village of Turvey Abbey, Bedfordshire. Adjacent to the monastery is the Priory of Our Lady of Peace of Olivetan Benedictine nuns. The monastery and the priory share worship services. While the monks have no outside apostolate, guests are welcome. The priory is not open to the public, but the chapel is open and visitors are welcome. [5]

The Congregation also maintain abbeys and prioral churches in Italy, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Belgium, Switzerland, Israel, Korea, Mexico, Guatemala and Brazil. [2] In 1960 they formed the Olivetan Congregation within the Benedictine Confederation.

Olivetan Benedictine Women

Olivetan nuns are distinguished from the sisters in that the nuns focus primarily on the Divine Office according to the Rule of Saint Benedict, while the sisters engage in outside apostolates such as religious education or pastoral care, and therefore follow a modified form of the rule. [6]

In 1874, Benedictine sisters from the Convent of Maria Rickenbach in the Canton of Unterwalden, Switzerland arrived as teachers in Maryville, Missouri. Shortly thereafter some of the sisters were sent to Arkansas. In 1893 the Arkansas community affiliated with the Olivetans. In 1900, they opened St. Bernard's Hospital in Jonesboro. [6]

The Prophecy of St. Malachy is a supposed list of 112 popes beginning in 1143 with Pope Celestine II and continuing apparently to the end of time. It was allegedly discovered around 1595 by Benedictine monk Arnold de Wyon, who attributes it to the 12th century Malachy of Armagh. Each pope is identified with a short cryptic motto. The next to last pope has the motto Gloria oliuæ (Glory of the olive).

After the election of Joseph Ratzinger to the papacy in 2005, proponents of the prophecy connected him to the entry for the next to last pope: Ratzinger chose the name Benedict; one of the Benedictine congregations is the Olivetans, thus, Gloria oliuæ.

However, there is no particular connection between the Olivetan Order and Pope Benedict XVI. In 1139, Malachy visited Rome, stopping at Clairvaux Abbey both on the way and on his return. His contemporary, Bernard of Clairvaux wrote a vita of St. Malachy, providing many interesting anecdotes, but does not mention any prophecy. Reputable church historians since the 18th century have considered "The Prophecy of St. Malachy" a forgery, [7] most likely written around 1590. Most scholars consider the document a 16th-century elaborate hoax, [8] bearing similarities to a 1557 history of the popes by Onofrio Panvinio, including mistakes. [9]

Thomas Groome, of Boston College said, "...the 'Prophecies of St. Malachy' are a grand old fun tale that have about as much reliability as the morning horoscope". [7]

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Trappists Roman Catholic religious order

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Saint Malachy Irish bishop

Saint Malachy was an Irish saint and Archbishop of Armagh, to whom were attributed several miracles and an alleged vision of 112 Popes later attributed to the apocryphal Prophecy of the Popes. It is now believed by scholars that this document was a forgery created by Cardinal Girolamo Simoncelli. Saint Malachy was the first native born Irish saint to be canonised. His brother was Gilla Críst Ua Morgair who later became Bishop Christian of Clogher from 1126 to 1138.

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Turvey Abbey

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Territorial Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore territorial abbey

The Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore is a large Benedictine monastery in the Italian region of Tuscany, 10 km south of Asciano. Its buildings, which are mostly of red brick, are conspicuous against the grey clayey and sandy soil—the Crete senesi which give this area of Tuscany its name.

The Subiaco Cassinese Congregation is an international union of Benedictine houses within the Benedictine Confederation. It developed from the Subiaco Congregation, which was formed in 1867 through the initiative of Dom Pietro Casaretto, O.S.B., as a reform of the way of life of monasteries of the Cassinese Congregation, formed in 1408, toward a stricter contemplative observance, and received final approval in 1872 by Pope Pius IX. After discussions between the two congregations at the start of the 21st century, approval was given by Pope Benedict XVI in 2013 for the incorporation of the Cassinese Congregation into its offshoot, the Subiaco Congregation. The expanded congregation was given this new name.

Bernardine Cistercians of Esquermes

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The Swiss-American Congregation is an association of Benedictine monasteries founded in 1881 in the United States, as a part of the international Benedictine Confederation of monasteries.

Silverstream Priory is a Roman Catholic monastery in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland, founded in 2012. The monastery is an autonomous diocesan priory of the Benedictine Monks of Perpetual Adoration.

References

  1. 1 2 3 Almond, Joseph Cuthbert. "Olivetans." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 11. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 10 April 2019PD-icon.svgThis article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  2. 1 2 "St Bernard Tolomei & The Congregation of Monte Oliveto", The Benedictine Monks, UK
  3. "Monastic life", Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore
  4. Our Lady of Guadalupe Abbey, Pecos, New Mexico
  5. Priory of Our Lady of Peace, Turvey Abbey, Bedfordshire
  6. 1 2 "History", Olivetan Benedictine Sisters
  7. 1 2 Sieczkowski, Cavan. "St. Malachy Last Pope Prophecy: What Theologians Think About 12th-Century Prediction", HuffPost.com, Dec 06, 2017
  8. Lorenzi, Rossella (13 February 2013). "Resigning Pope Brings Doomsday Prophecy". Discovery News.
  9. O'Brien, M. J. (1880). An historical and critical account of the so-called Prophecy of St. Malachy, regarding the succession of the popes. Dublin: M.H. Gill & Son.

Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Olivetans"  . Catholic Encyclopedia . New York: Robert Appleton.

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