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.
God, who with all power could come in any form, surprises us in silence. We are caught off guard because it is contrary from the force and pride we are accustomed to in the use of power. Silence is contrary to the cascading words and noise of our daily life. Instead, silence invites us to stop and listen deeply to what is in us and in others.
-Br. Luke Ditewig, SSJE
Recent Sermons from the Chapel
“Bernard had discovered the good news that life is full of meaning in union with God. His martyrdom on this day 125 years ago was not a throwing away of his life, as some would imagine, but a complete giving of his life to the One to whom he had turned over his life that day in the baptismal tank at the old St. Philip’s. ”
Br. James Koester turns for inspiration to a less-remembered day in the life of Bernard Mizeki.Read More >
“The prayer that Jesus taught is a simple, supremely effective tool to slice away anything in us that is not humble or sincere. It is the best, most straightforward antidote to all our articulate spiritual nonsense. Over time, it makes us real.”
Br. Keith Nelson celebrates the simple transformative power of the prayer that Jesus taught us.Read More >
“Perfection and maturity are impossible. I grew up listening to Sally O’Connor sing that the Bible is full of “improbable people for impossible tasks.”[v] What God promises and commands, God also enables. By the Spirit, we keep coming bit by bit, more into life, more into maturity, learning one step at a time. Jesus keeps telling us—often to our surprise—that there’s more.”
Br. Luke Ditewig encourages us to listen for the encouraging voice of Jesus, enabling what he invites.Read More >
“The view of a monastic vocation from Bede was one that was not isolated for its own sake. Any solitude was to protect the sanctity and regularity of prayer, but always in relationship to the surrounding people and communities. And I needed that, because I had built up in my head an idolatrous vision of the monastic life that was only as pure as it was isolated.”
Br. Lucas Hall claims a long-awaited chance to thank the seventh-century monastic, Bede, for the helpful vision of the monastic life which he provides.Read More >
“The gift of the Spirit at Pentecost then, was not so much the gift of speaking foreign languages, but the gift of comprehension that resulted in unity and understanding. That is the gift that brought about amazement, and even healing. In a world so divided by mistrust, enmity, even hatred and fear, the gift of comprehension feels elusive, and impossible to attain. Yet those are the very gifts given, when God poured upon those early disciples the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
At a time when hostility and hatred seem to be our daily diet, Br. James Koester urges us to embrace the true gifts of Pentecost: not tongues, but tolerance, not flames, but faithfulness, not wind, but wonder.Read More >