9-15 March, 2015 - Visitation



The Cistercian Order has, from its beginnings, been organized by filiation. That is, when one house founds another house, the founding house becomes the mother house, with certain responsibilities.

One of the main responsibilities is the "visitation." The abbot of the mother house, who is called the father-immediate, visits the daughter house, interviews all its members, and writes a report on the state of the house, which is then given to the daughter house and to the Order's main offices in Rome.




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Gethsemani's original mother house, Melleray in France, is currently in a fragile condition and has not been able to carry out visitations.

Therefore, a few years ago, Gethsemani changed its paternity to New Melleray, in Iowa. New Melleray was founded shortly after Gethsemani, in 1849.

This year, the abbot of New Melleray, Dom Mark Scott, made his first visitation to Gethsemani. Dom Mark is well-known to the monks here, having lived with us for about 5 years prior to his election.

His visitation report pointed out areas where we could improve, as well as areas where we are doing well. We thank him for his careful attention his open ear and his gentle honesty.