“Jesus looked on him and loved him” (Mk 10,21). In every age, God has raised up men and women who hear Christ’s call to discipleship, and respond in a radical way, leaving the comfort of friends and family to dedicate themselves completely to the Lord. The radical nature of this way of life finds a sympathetic echo in the human heart, which is “restless until it rests it Thee”, as St. Augustine put it. When the Lord Jesus walked this earth, disciples gathered round him who wanted to be with him, remain with him, abide with him – forever. The monk or nun longs to follow the Lord in the same way.

What else is the cloistered life if not the continuous renewal of a “yes” that opens the doors of one’s being to welcome the Lord? It is in fact thanks to this stability and cloistered existence that you pass through this life without setting your hearts on earthly things, but striving constantly towards your goal. The nun, a pilgrim in her cloister, is always journeying towards the Lord. Each new morning she can sing with the Psalmist “ O God, you are my God whom I seek; and my soul thirsts... Thus have I gazed towards you in the sanctuary” (Ps 63:2-3). And with the Bride of the Canticle she can say: I will rise then and go about the city; in the streets and crossings I will seek him whom my heart loves”
(Song 3:2).

In the monastery everything is directed to seeking the Face of Christ, everything is reduced to the essential, because only what brings one close to him is important. Therefore, how precious is your vocation of special consecration! It is truly a gift that is centred in the mystery of ecclesial communion, accompanying the apostolic mission of those who labour in proclaiming the Gospel.
(Blessed Pope John Paul II)

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