Honoring Founding Day

The Hand of God

Honoring Founding Day with the Priory Preserve Pilgrimage, Mass, and Cookout!

June 22, 1948 was a momentous day for the Benedictine Community at Saint Benedict’s Monastery in St. Joseph, Minnesota. On that day, 178 of its members courageously took leave of their home in central Minnesota and established a new foundation—St. Paul’s Priory—at 301 Summit Avenue in the shadow of the Cathedral of Saint Paul.

Every year, the Sisters of St. Paul’s Monastery celebrate the anniversary of their founding in special ways. This year, the Sisters will host a pilgrimage through the Priory Preserve (former property of the Monastery now operated and maintained by the City of Maplewood). This was a very meaningful experience last summer and the Sisters are excited to host this prayer walk again.

This year Founding Day is on a Saturday. We’re praying for sunshine and moderate temperatures (St. Scholastica, come to our aid!). Pilgrims will gather with the Sisters at 8:00am for Morning Prayer. The Sisters will offer a special blessing over all the pilgrims. All doing the prayer walk will then process down Monastery Way to the Priory Preserve.

The prayer walk through the Priory Preserve is 1.5 miles of unpaved but groomed trail. There are 12 stops along the path established by the City exploring the different environments of the Preserve. The Monastery created a ritual modeled after Stations of the Cross so that at each stop the pilgrims reflect on the Rule of Benedict, Sacred Scripture, Pope Francis’ Encyclical on the Environment (Laudato Si’), and sing a hymn as pilgrims move to the next station. The conversations and also the sacred silence as pilgrims move from station to station was very meaningful last year.

The Pilgrimage lasts about 90 minutes and will end with group reflection on the experience. Pilgrims are invited to join the Sisters for 11:30 Mass and then enjoy a great cookout outside on the courtyard.

Even if you aren’t able to enjoy the pilgrimage experience join the Sisters for Mass and the cookout. Registration is required to help plan for the day. Register for the Pilgrimage by clicking here. Register for the Mass and/or the Cookout by clicking here.