Superiors of the Trappist U.S. Region Meet

U.S Superiors meeting, June 22, 2022- Having gone West in 2022, the Abbots and Abbesses of the US Region were immediately at home in the expansive beauty and peaceful environment of Villa Maria del Mar Retreat Center in Santa Cruz, California. We were graciously welcomed not only by our hostesses, the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, but also by a pod of dolphins plus a whale performing relatively close to shore, and with seals making their appearance later in the meeting.Casa Del Mar retreat center

US Superiors pose in front of a large tree at Regional Superiors meeting

That the spirit of the Charter of Charity remains alive and active among us was evident in the reading of the House Reports and in the depth of the collective engagement in the situation of each community. A truth voiced often during this Regional Meeting is that our charism does not exist in abstraction but only in living monks and nuns. Belief in the importance and possibilities of bringing the Cistercian Charism to our world today, as well as a deep desire to do so, was evident in the House Reports. Doing so means that each community continues to seek quality of life and not merely continued existence in the same place.

Dom Bernardus Peeters, Abbot General OCSO


We were honored to welcome to the meeting our new Abbot General, Dom Bernardus Peeters, OCSO, whose wisdom, vision, and dedication are sources of inspiration and encouragement to us. The relaxed, interactive presence of Dom Bernardus gave a pastoral quality to the meeting that was helpful and inspiring as we worked with the challenging realities of our times. Dom Bernardus gave of himself generously. We appreciated the light he shed on issues that need to be confronted as well as the suggestions and challenges he offered us. These interactions helped us feel more connected to the international dimension of the Order. It is good to have hope at the helm. Our gathering was further enriched by the presence and participation of the Abbot General’s Secretary, Fr Raphaël Garcia-Pelayo, Abbot Steele Hartmann of Tarrawara, and our Regional Delegate, Sr Myra Hill of Mississippi.