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.
Pledge yourself to live in the way of Jesus. Commit yourself to speaking and upholding the truth. Overcome fear and do what is good and right. Never forget the lives of the poor. Take your inspiration from John the Baptist, or from any other figure – including Jesus himself – who dared to speak the truth and suffer the consequences.
-Br. David Vryhof, SSJE
Silence. Flickering candlelight. Sunlight streaming through stained glass. Soak in the beauty of our sanctuary, open morning to night. Pray, ponder, or participate in the Brothers’ daily office. Service Schedule >
Birdsong. Meadow grasses waving in the breeze. Stars overhead. At our rural retreat house, we invite you to pray as you hike, light a fire, weed the garden, and bask in the beauty of Creation. Retreat information>
Recent Sermons from the Chapel
Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: Android | RSSProverbs 8: 14, 22 – 31Psalm 8Romans 5: 1 – 5John 16: 12 – 15 One of the great lines from Father Benson, which is among my favourites, is something he said about the Holy Trinity. Writing to Father Rivington in 1875, he says: I quite…Read More >
“Pentecost is important, not because of what it did once, for a group of people long ago, in a land far way, but what it means for us, here, today. We are not here as antiquarians, to freeze frame the gifts of the Holy Spirit, but to discover how those gifts are continuing to be manifested in us today.”
Preaching at the Order of the Holy Cross on the Feast of Pentecost, Br. James Koester celebrates how monastic communities – like all communities and practices of faith – are not vestiges of the past, but living revelations of God, who is ever present and ever new.Read More >
“When you are facing life’s trials, when life seems to be an uphill battle, when you fear being overwhelmed by fear or worry or grief, recall this image of Paul and Silas, beaten and bloodied, locked in chains, singing and praising God! This joy can be yours as well. This freedom belongs to you as a child of God. Nothing can destroy it or take it away from you.”
Br. David Vryhof looks to Saint Paul for an example of the life-changing freedom that comes with knowing, loving, and following Christ.Read More >
“When God calls us, it’s certainly no sin to ask ‘why me?’ But in God’s judgment, you are the right person for the job. Your body is the right one to do the work you are called to. It is strong enough and holy enough.”
Former SSJE Monastic Intern, Lydia Simmons, celebrates the Visitation between Mary and Elizabeth with an inspiring message about how our bodies can magnify the Lord.Read More >
“I understand that “direct flights” in the spiritual life are available only to angels. I do not understand the Ascension, anymore than I can levitate – or fly. But I love the Ascension because I love the Ascended Christ and I sense now more than ever what his Ascension means for us here below.”
Br. Keith Nelson reflects on his own transformed understanding of the Ascension, and its invitation to all of us to be Christ’s body in this in-between moment.Read More >