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The monks of St. Benedict's Abbey profess three vows: Conversatio morum ("conversion of life"), obedience, and stability. Chastiy and poverty, the evangelical counsels professed by other relgious orders are understood within conversion.
A Question of Courage
It takes courage to face death. It took heroic courage for young men throughout American history to give up their lives in defense of our freedom.
But dying is not enough, as the world has found to its cost. Wars and other evils are caused by poisonous ideas, which cannot be stopped by bullets or bombs. But they can be over come by more powerful ideas - such as the truth of Christ.
Christ came into the world to carry the fight against the Prince of Darkness. He founded His Church to carry on the struggle to the end of time.
There has been no lack of young men ready to sacrifice their lives in the service of their country. Why are there so few with the courage to dedicate their lives in the service of Christ?
Never before in history, perhaps, has there been such great need or such splendid opportunities to serve Christ.
In this country the need can be measured only by the mounting evils we see around us: the lust that is destroying the American home, the greed that is threatening the American economic life, the pride that ignores the injustices to so many of our fellow Americans, the falsehood and confusion in our schools that may lead to the breakdown of our democratic government.
It is time for young men of courage to stand up once more and shout with united voices and the example of their lives that these things are wrong. They will find community in the way of life laid down by young Benedict so many centuries ago.
They can find no surer means of saving souls. They may once again save civilization.
- Abbot Brendan Downey, O.S.B.
Adapted from Comrades in Christ, 1947