Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Sunday 01 August |
Saint of the Day: St. Alphonsus Liguori
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

WATCH: When A Man is Called to the Monastery

Zoe Romanowsky - published on 01/26/16

"You give up everything and God hands it back to you in a completely new way."

“Benedict came to the monastery just to be alone with God. Not to achieve anything else. History now shows us that single purpose of his changed the world.” – Fr. Joel Martin, O.S.B.

St. Bernard Abbey is a monastery of Catholic monks in Cullman, Alabama. In the 1840s, monks from Metten Abbey in Germany, which was founded n 700 A.D., brought the Benedictine monastic life to America. The first foundation of the community was in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, and then monks were sent to Alabama in the 1870s to serve a growing German-Catholic population there. St. Bernard Abbey was founded in 1891 and a school was opened one year later.

More to read: “Now is the hour…” How one sentence from a saint could change an entire life

The monks now run the St. Bernard Abbey Retreat and Conference Center and the St. Bernard Preparatory School. The monastery’s Ave Maria Grotto also welcomes many visitors who come to see Brother Joseph Zoetle, O.S.B.’s miniature replicas of famous Old Testament and Christian buildings, including his famous miniatures of ancient Jerusalem.

About 35 monks currently live, pray, and work at St. Bernard’s Abbey and this beautifully-filmed video captures a little bit about their lives and how it happens that ordinary men in the world continue to hear the call to religious life and enter the monastery.

“Happiness comes when you’re willing to give yourself away for someone or something worthy of that gift. That’s what makes us free. We are all called do that. And we see it happen at the monastery.” – Fr. Joel Martin, O.S.B

More to read: What is the use of monasticism?

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Cerith Gardiner
Gold-winning Filipina Olympian shares her Miraculous Medal for th...
Cerith Gardiner
Simone Biles leaves the Olympics with an important lesson for her...
Mathilde De Robien
Did you know Princess Di was buried with a rosary?
Zelda Caldwell
World-record winning gymnast Simone Biles leans on her Catholic f...
Theresa Civantos Barber
The one thing we all should do before this summer ends
Zelda Caldwell
German women’s gymnastics teams modest dress protests sport’s ...
Lauren Daigle
J-P Mauro
After 3 years Lauren Daigle ousts herself from #1 Billboard spot
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.