Missionary Saints – Missionary Formation Across the Centuries

September 3 is the Feast Day of St. Gregory the Great. Pope St. Gregory lived in a tumultuous time as the Roman Empire was in decay and coming apart all around him. The Church had been established in England some centuries before (think of St. Patrick, who was an English missionary bishop to Ireland), but it was in need of revival. In 598 A.D., at the request of the Pope, St. Augustine of Canterbury took Benedictine missionaries to England and renewed the proclamation of the Gospel, restored Church structures and breathed new life into the Catholic culture of England.

That missionary effort was so successful that it ultimately led to Latrobe, Pennsylvania! One hundred years after St. Augustine brought Benedictine missionaries to England, St. Boniface brought Benedictine missionaries to Germany.  Those missionaries founded the monastery of St. Michael in Metten near Munich. A thousand years later, that monastery sent Boniface Wimmer with Benedictine missionaries to Latrobe to bring the Gospel to America.

In our day, Benedictine monks continue to labor for revival!  The pastoral, educational and missionary apostolates of Saint Vincent Archabbey serve the Church in western Pennsylvania and around the world, seeking to renew the proclamation of the Gospel and breathe new life into Catholic communities. The Institute for Ministry Formation is the latest initiative in this 174-year labor of love.