Gower, Missouri- The Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, is a group of young Catholic cloistered nuns living a secluded life in the rolling hills and farmlands north of Kansas City.
They have chosen to come away from the world and spend their days working in silence-- except for when they are singing sacred music. These are women are seeking a conversion of life. “We are in a sense reaching back through time and conserving that way of life for the future,” Mother Cecilia said. The Benedictine way of life has given the church thousands of saints, she said.
It is within this contemporary monastery that these sisters are working on their latest album of sacred music to raise money to build their church. These singing nuns gained national attention when four of their albums topped the classical charts.
The convent was built on land donated by a local farmer. According to Sr. Scholastica, the sub-prioress of the order, on the day the nuns first visited the land in 2007 to inspect it, they spotted a cloud formation of a very clear dark-gray arm and hand pointing down to the property. Above the "hand" floated a bright white dove. "It was a truly astonishing sight. Yes, this is where God wanted us," she said.
Their days are filled with silence, chores, prayers, chanting and song while they wait for God to come to them in whispers. Wearing distinctive habits and veils that cover all but their pretty faces and hands, they make their deep commitment to be a bride of Christ, visible to all who come into contact with them.
Each night the nuns have Vespers in their tiny chapel. Evening prayer is part of the Liturgy of the Hours, also known as the Divine Office. Candles are lit; the pious nuns quietly process into the hallowed space in a very orderly way. They begin to express ancient soulful rituals as they chant, bow and sing, "with the help of the angels."
Their numbers are growing, as are their financial needs. They continue to expand and create a holy atmosphere conducive to a powerful inner life.
They have attracted women from all over the globe. Their average age is 29, including Sister Wilhelmina who will be 93 just after Easter. “It is a great blessing to have her wisdom and experience to guide us” said Sister Scholastica.
The nuns recently started a campaign to build their own church. "The monastery church is the focal point of every community, a place where the faithful may come partake of the prayer that is constantly offered there” the sister explains. The decision to build the $6.5 million church is a practical one, they have run out of room. They have raised half the money needed. The hope it will be finished this fall, just in time for more candidates arrive.
They rely on the money they make from their music and donations. They recently got a glimpse of the changing world when received a large donation in bitcoin.
Written By Karen Pulfer Focht
Former story, photos and video at:
Their CDs can be purchased and donations can be made at http://benedictinesofmary.org //////
©-Karen Pulfer Focht-Not For Use Without Written Permission