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.
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 sends his followers into the world, asking them to be channels of God’s love and carriers of God’s peace. He risks being vulnerable, and invites them to do the same. The evangelism he teaches and demonstrates is an evangelism from below, not from above. ”
Br. David Vryhof studies Jesus’ disciples – as far off as those in the Scriptures, as near as those from SSJE’s own history – for lessons in how Jesus’ power is most evident in our weakness.Read More >
“Keith, by taking the vows of poverty, celibacy, and obedience for life, you are doing something profoundly important, not for your sake, but for the sake of the world. What some see as a waste, as running away, as hiding, even as a death, is actually the way of Jesus. It is the way of self – spending, redemptive love. It is the way God has chosen you to change this old world.”
On the joyous occasion of Br. Keith Nelson’s profession in Life Vows, Br. James Koester considers how the monastic vows point us all toward the way of Jesus: a way of self-spending, redemptive love.Read More >
“No creaturely title or pedigree, no national border or communal parameter undoes our dependence on this God for all good things. They are not realities of our own making. Our sustenance and security can only ever be gifts of the Love that created us. No border can free or save us from the claims of such a dependence. It usurps every one of our identity claims. ”
On America’s Independence Day, Br. Sean Glenn invites us to recognize our dependence as a path to answering Jesus’ call to love our enemies.Read More >
“Fear is a very costly, distressing emotion when we’re in touch with impending danger, or pain, or evil, or confusion, or vulnerability, or embarrassment. What are you afraid of? What causes your heart to tremble?”
Br. Curtis Almquist encourages us to speak our most honest prayer, sharing our fear with Jesus.Read More >
“What ultimately unites these two deeply faithful, deeply flawed followers of Jesus is not their virtue, but their need. What unites them is their weakness, not their strength, what Paul calls ‘strength being made perfect in weakness.’”
Br. Curtis Almquist finds in Saints Peter and Paul two model for the Christian life: exemplars not in virtue or excellence, but in having hearts broken open by their need and God’s forgiveness.Read More >