Welcome to SSJE
We are a community of men giving our whole selves over to living the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Rooted in the ancient monastic traditions of prayer and community life, and critically engaged with contemporary culture, we seek to know and share an authentic experience of God’s love and mercy. We live a common life shaped by worship, prayer, and our Rule of Life.
We invite you to explore these pages to learn more about how we live and pray, the tradition that grounds us, and the call that draws us onward day by day.
Do we feel worthy, dignified and endowed with purpose at our core? Or do we feel unworthy and useless? Some of us have been enslaved or dominated by the will of powerful people or institutions. We may be victims of racism or classism, ageism, sexism, or heterosexism. If so, the false story “I am not worthy” has been planted deep, and the effects can be devastating for our relationship with God. Genuine penitence gives voice to our feelings of guilt but accepts the foundational truth that, while personal and collective sin is inevitable, it cannot displace our inalienable worthiness in Christ.
-Br. Keith Nelson, SSJE
Recent Sermons from the Chapel
“We often shoot off panicked prayers, frenzied, striving and scared. How can we be still? Stop. For a minute or for a few. Stop what you’re doing. Stop the noise. Disconnect from devices. Take deep breaths. Go outside to breathe fresh air. Shake out the panic, or walk or run. Gently sway, rocking, calming yourself. Gaze at something beautiful: light and shadow, tree, bird, or you own hand. Pray your desire: ‘Let me be still, and know that you are God.’”
Br. Luke Ditewig reminds us that we were created for stillness.Read More >
“As we gathered around our mother and described our day, the fun bits, the sad bits, our hopes, our fears, our anger, our confusion, we were learning, and growing in understanding and maturity. The same thing was happening when those disciples gathered around Jesus to talk about their days on mission. They described their experiences and feelings, their hopes and fears, and as they spoke, Jesus was gently guiding and encouraging them, feeding their souls, restoring their spirits.”
Br. Geoffrey Tristram invites us to look back and chat about our day with God as openly as the disciples did with Jesus.Read More >
“If asked the question, “How would you describe God’s character?” how would you respond? Of course, none of us can really answer that question in its fullness. Even with a careful apophasis—that is, an approach to speaking of God in terms of what God is not—we nonetheless remain confronted with the reality that our language about God can only ever attempt to point toward God’s character.”
Rising above language’s limitations, Br. Sean Glenn points to the heart of who God actually is.Read More >
“The picture which Jesus paints of the sabbath is not a day constrained by rules and regulations, such as my mother experienced, but a day of healing, wholeness, and liberation, a day of mercy, love, and delight, in which we discover again the very nature and being of this God, who is a God of rest.”
Br. James Koester invites us to experience the joys of the Sabbath.Read More >
“How many times have I heard this passage from the gospel, sighed and thought, you’re right, Jesus. I just need a nap. I just need to recharge my batteries and I’ll be set. But that recharge inevitably diminishes and I’m back to weary. What’s really needed is a power adaptor, a way to plug into the source of power directly.”
Br. Todd Blackham invites us to breathe the very breath of God and rest in the wholeness of God’s being.Read More >