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.
Instead of searching for light, let yourself be in the dark. Set aside logic. Engage with the arts, a gift for all of God’s children of every age. With pencils or crayons or paint, play with color, draw or doodle on a blank page or with a book, with a medium you know or have never used. Don’t think. Just be. Play. Imagine. Create. See what comes.
-Br. Luke Ditewig, 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
“Jesus loves you. More than believing or knowing this wild, passionate truth, Jesus invites us to feel and live it.”
As we prepare for Christ coming as a child at Christmas, Br. Luke Ditewig encourages us to try out several prayer practices that can help us embrace our role as beloved children, as little ones whom God seeks and delights to find, to hold, to love.Read More >
“For many, Christmas is about a cute, pudgy, sweet smelling baby, nestled in a bed of clean straw, in a romantically quaint, clean, rustic looking barn, amidst softly falling snow. They don’t want a saviour, because that would suggest that we need saving.”
Br. James Koester recalls the true meaning of Christmas, which is the fulfillment of God’s promise of comfort, peace, and hope, to a world enslaved by fear.Read More >
“We groan in anticipation for the day when justice and truth will prevail, when those who have been held down and stepped upon will be raised up, when the powerful and the mighty who have served their own interests will be cast down.”
At a moment when we have more cause for despair than ever before, Br. David Vryhof encourages us to listen for the voices of hope, and to believe in the dream of God.Read More >
“It is night. I am tired. I am sorry, unimpressive, and wholly inadequate. I fall. I fade. I give all my strength, but still, I make for a very poor watchman.”
In this season of waiting, Br. Lucas Hall exposes our human weakness and frailty, only to reveal the incredible promise of God’s strength.Read More >
“We need time to recollect, remember, and prepare room in our hearts for the Christ child who comes to us at Christmas, because Jesus changes everything!”
Even as our culture races toward Christmas, Br. Jim Woodrum encourages us to embrace the waiting time of Advent.Read More >