Monday: I left Eldo at 11:30 and arrived at Subiaco around 3:15 in the afternoon. Somewhere around Mt. Petit Jean it started raining. Lots and lots of rain. After getting to the rectory of St. Benedict's Parish in Subiaco, where I'm staying with my confrere, Father Aaron, I got changed and went to the abbey across the highway for the annual jubilee Mass for our monks who are celebrating the anniversaries of their professions or ordinations. Father Hugh Assenmacher celebrates 50 years as a priest this year, and Father Brendan Miller celebrates 25 years also. Abbot Jerome presided at the Mass and preached.
This past year, we've lost three monks by death: Abbot Raphael, Father Harold, and Brother Martin. This month, two solemnly professed monks have received or are applying for dispensations from their vows and are leaving the community. One monk in temporary vows is also on the way out. This means that our community will have been reduced by six this year, with no new ones coming in. Such a situation cannot long obtain. We have to get more young men to come and to stay or else we will all be gone, sooner rather than later.