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Pray the O Antiphons

The "O Antiphons," one of the oldest liturgical rituals in the church, are prayed around the world during the final days of Advent. For the seven days before Christmas, we recall in these prayers a quality of Christ that must be realized before the presence of Christ can consume the world.

Join us in prayer. Listen to the Benedictine Sisters sing the antiphons that were composed by the late Erie Benedictine Sister Mary David Callahan.

O Adonai

December 18
When we build a vision of life it is necessary to realize that Jesus must be the center of it—not our institutions, good as they may be; not our plans or personal talents, necessary as they are. — Joan D. Chittister, OSB

O Adonai, leader of the ancient Israel, giving Moses, while in the burning bush, the law on Sinai. Come with outstretched arms and teach us.


O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Advent is the season of preparing to birth the Christ in our lives and in our world. It is a time to slow down, to pray: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel; it is a time to wait with patience for the reign of God. “It is while waiting for the coming of the reign of God, Advent after Advent, that we come to realize that its coming depends on us.” (From The Liturgical Year by Joan Chittister, OSB)

Take a moment to reflect on the meaning of Advent with the Benedictine Sisters of Erie. O Come, O Come, Emmanuel features the sisters’ handbell choir under the direction of Sister Marilyn Schauble.

Christmas Appeal 2018

Christmas is a time when we celebrate the birth of Christ and the coming of Christ’s light into our world. The Christ child in our midst is a gift that invites us to expand our hearts and our giving.

Please consider a financial gift to our Christmas Fund! Your gift will support our ministries and assist with the upkeep of our monastery. It will also bring love and care to our senior sisters who worked so long for so little.

Click here to read more or go to our secure website and give now.

News and Events

Emmaus in Attendance at the CROP Walk
October 2, 2018

Over 30 people representing Emmaus Ministries walked in the CROP Walk at Presque Isle on Sunday, September 23rd.

The CROP Walk raises money for people around the world who are struggling with hunger, “one step at a time.” In Erie, a percentage of the profits are always shared with Emmaus Ministries and other nonprofits that address starvation and malnourishment. Last year, Emmaus received $850 from the 2017 CROP Walk.

Emmaus volunteers Shelia Causgrove and Barb Roseborough were the coordinators of the Emmaus team, organizing the fundraising and walkers before the event.

Liturgy from A to Z: October 1, 2018
October 1, 2018

The topic of Liturgical Art is continued with this week's Liturgy A-Z posting. Every Monday Sister Karen Oprenchok will add a new entry on the particular topic at hand. In today's post she shares an icon-making photo progression. Click here to read From this to that: St. John the Baptist.



Pies in the Face, Jeans, and Emmaus Soup Kitchen
September 28, 2018

Have you ever gotten a pie in the face?

To raise money for the Emmaus Soup Kitchen (and have a bit of fun!), the RA’s (Resident Assistants of housing) at Mercyhurst University allowed their students to smash pies into their faces.

“Event leaders organized a ‘pie your RA’ program that required a donation to get a pie,” said Bethany Brun, the Coordinator of Service Learning at Mercyhurst. “Many of the RA’s who participated have served meals at the soup kitchen on Saturdays,” she continued. “So all proceeds from the event were to benefit the Emmaus Soup Kitchen.”


Jubilee 2018 Re-cap
September 26, 2018

In a Benedictine community jubilee is important. It is a celebration that commemorates the passage of years in which a sister has faithfully lived the vowed life. This year’s Golden Jubilarians: Sisters Mary Susan Hallstein, Janet Goetz, Marla Bleil, Dorothy Stoner and Susan Freitag were celebrated with great joy and gratitude on Saturday, September 22. With simplicity and gentleness, courage and conviction, these women have lived as Benedictines and worked to bring about the reign of God as a result of a call and a response that set them on a journey with God.

View the slide show...

Erie Insurance Charity Golf Tournament benefits Emmaus Ministries
September 24, 2018

For the second year in a row, Nat Burnside, CEO of Maple Donuts Erie, and his three golfing companions participated in the Erie Insurance Charity Golf Tournament to raise money for Emmaus Ministries.

This year, the Maple Donuts team took 8th place out of 24 teams, raising $3,000 for Emmaus. The tournament was held at the Kahkwa Club in Erie on Monday, September 17.

Emmaus staff member Breanna Mekuly joined the team after the tournament for dinner and the awards ceremony. “I’m impressed by the commitment of Erie Insurance and all the golfers to support the nonprofits of Erie...

Iconography: Symbolism and Color
September 24, 2018

It’s Monday and postings on the topic of Liturgical Art continue. Click here to read today’s post on Liturgy from A to Z: Iconography: Symbolism and Color.

Sister Karen says: “It all means something: the position of hands, fingers, and the body, along with facial features, clothing, and objects . . .”

Jubilee Day
September 22, 2018

Today, Saturday, September 22, was Jubilee Day for five Benedictines: (L to R) Sisters Dorothy Stoner, Mary Susan Hallstein, Janet Goetz, Susan Freitag and Marla Bleil. They renewed their monastic vows during a festive Evening Prayer for community members, family and friends. It was a day of rejoicing in gratitude for these sisters who celebrated a 50 year commitment to vowed monastic life.

"We are very grateful for our jubilarians and for all that they have brought to our community and to the world, especially their love for the monastic way of life," said Sister Anne Wambach,...

SONS of Lake Erie invite the Mayor to an Emmaus Fish Fry
September 19, 2018

Fish dinner on Friday is an Emmaus soup kitchen ritual, but on Friday, Sept. 14, it was a happening. Instead of baked packaged frozen fish, guests were treated to freshly fried Lake Erie walleye and perch by the SONS (Save Our Native Species) of Lake Erie.

“Once again, the SONS prepared a generous banquet,” said Sister Mary Miller, director. “Each guest enjoyed two large fish sandwiches, potato salad, coleslaw, chips, and a dessert.”

A lot went into making this dinner possible. First, the SONS sponsored and officiated a...

September 19, 2018

Welcome to our Circle sang the children just as they do every day before they begin their classes.

Upwards of three hundred Neighborhood Art House (NAH) supporters joined the faculty and children to celebrate this year's Taste of the Arts. Many took advantage of the opportunity to mingle with the children who offered musical selections on piano or violin, described the various framed art pieces for sale, or demonstrated what they were learning in some of their classes.

Lisa Chinsky and Annalynn Shuttleworth, co-chairpersons, and the TOA planning committee, had...

BFP and Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions
September 17, 2018

Benedictines for Peace (BFP) is participating in Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions. Nationally over 2650 marches, actions, events and rallies are in process in all 50 states. This unprecedented campaign of grassroots activism calls for nonviolent action against racism, war, poverty, and environmental destruction.

“People across the United States are taking Campaign Nonviolence to the streets to end violence and injustices, and begin peacemaking,” said Dr. Ken Butigan, co-founder of Campaign Nonviolence and...

Liturgy A-Z: September 17, 2018
September 17, 2018

The topic of Liturgical Art is continued with this week's Liturgy A-Z posting. Every Monday Sister Karen Oprenchok will add a new entry on the particular topic at hand. In today's post she gives some very interesting background on icons. Click here to read A VERY brief history of icons, materials, and design.