My dear fellow Alumni,

"It was the best of times; it was the worst of times." Dickens may have said it first, but it certainly applies to our times! As we all negotiate our way in the midst of COVID-19, may I assure you of the love and support of all the monks.

The worst of times: so many in our world have been touched in tragic ways by this pandemic, and it is heart-wrenching to witness the suffering it has caused. Yet, the best of times: out of this tragedy, great good has come, as we see the courage and wonderful care and concern of so many for the afflicted, the coming together (if albeit 'virtually') of so many to provide mutual support and encouragement, and the outpouring of faith that is evident as so many turn to the Lord for the grace of perseverance. 

Here at Priory, we have had to face the challenge of suddenly moving to "distance learning" and the closing down of our campus. This was especially hard for our graduating Seniors, who were robbed in so many ways of all those wonderful "rights of passage" which mark the Spring of one's Senior year. Yet, this Spring also showed us all the strength and resilience of Priory, and brought so many of us together in a mysterious way.

In the monastery, we all remain healthy, and continue to grow in fraternal charity, as we have to live together in a way we have never had to before: serving one another in basic ways (like cleaning our common bathrooms!), and trying to boost one another's spirits when we begin to get "cabin fever." Above all else, the monks draw their strength from our spiritual life of private prayer, the celebration of the Divine Office, and the Mass. It is a great grace that we can still do this together as a community.

An essential part of that prayer, every day, is our praying for all of you. Know that we keep you all in our hearts, and stand ready to support you in a way that we can. With God's grace, we shall all get through this!

Laus Tibi Domine!

Yours as ever in the Lord,

Abbot Gregory Mohrman, O.S.B., '76