Br. David Vryhof, SSJE

Br. David Vryhof, SSJE is a native of Grand Rapids, Michigan. He attended Calvin University, then went on to earn a Master’s degree in Education of the Deaf at Gallaudet College in Washington, D.C. Prior to coming to the Community in 1985, he taught at the Rhode Island School for the Deaf in Providence, then at the MICO Teachers’ College in Kingston, Jamaica (where he also became an Anglican). Following his arrival at the Monastery, David studied at Duke University and the General Theological Seminary and was ordained to the priesthood 1994. He was life-professed in 1997 and has served the Community as Assistant Superior as well as Novice Guardian (a post in which he served for a total of 17 years!). His specific interests include Ignatian Spirituality, Spiritual Discernment, U.S. and world politics, as well as issues surrounding minorities in the U.S. such as African-Americans, native peoples, LGBTQ people and those living in poverty. He is currently studying Spanish, and enjoys exercising, reading, and watching movies. David is credited with being the most committed sports fan in the Community and loves all the Boston teams.

 

Learn more about Br. Davids's Catch the Life journey to monastic life >

Selection of Br. David's teachings from "Brother, Give Us a Word"

Turn Around

It is as if we are on a moving walkway. If we do nothing, we will simply be carried along by the materialism and consumerism of our culture. We have to be willing to turn around, to walk against the flow of the culture, to push back against the assumptions and values of a nation…

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Attention

Some of us may experience a dramatic call, which turns us around and points us in an entirely new direction. But most of us, most of the time, will experience God’s call as something that only becomes clear over time, and seems to unfold gradually in very ordinary ways. Don’t wait for the writing on…

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Teach

We are teachers, all of us. And though many of us may never stand in front of a classroom or deliver a lecture, we are, all of us, teaching the world what it means to belong to God and to live as citizens of the Kingdom of God. We do this by our words and…

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Selection of Br. Davids's writing

A Painful Legacy to Be Confronted

“We like to think that if we had lived during the era of slavery, we would have been staunch abolitionists. We like to think that had we lived in the era of racial terror, we would have spoken up and tried to stop the lynchings. But the truth, I suspect, is that most of us would have remained silent.”

In this painful, personal journey through the eras of America’s shameful
racial past, Br. David Vryhof guides us through his moral reckoning with
insight and humility, and urges us toward a similar confrontation.

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God Loves Humans

“If forgiveness is one of the most powerful forces for redemption in the Christian faith, unforgiveness is one of the most powerful forces for destruction. Unforgiveness hardens the heart. It magnifies a perceived offense to the point where we can no longer appreciate a person’s value because all we see is how they have grieved us. No wonder the petition about forgiveness – “Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us” – sits at the heart of the Lord’s Prayer.”

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Between Good & Evil: The Practice of Spiritual Discernment

“The spiritual skill of discernment enables us not only to resist the lure of those voices that would distract and distance us from God, but also to perceive directly God’s engagement with us in the circumstances of our lives as we navigate the many decisions that crop up along our way.”

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