While in conversations with guests the question: “How many of you are still there?” is regularly asked and the number of empty chairs in the chapel, refectory and recreation room continues to increase, you are stubborn enough to point out new initiatives and living groups, the number of which is constantly growing. Apparently there are two processes underway that are closely related to each other in terms of content but often take place at a spatial distance from each other. The meeting days in Maastricht made it clear to me that old and young religious community have something to offer to each other, and that it is therefore better not to lose sight of each other. Thank you for that.
Fortunately, here in Huijbergen, the spatial distance between new and old is only one street wide. In 1854, the brothers van Huijbergen started in the very last monastery of the Wilhelmite Order, which had spread over large parts of Europe since the twelfth century. From 1277 to 1847 they contributed in Huijbergen from their Benedictine inspiration to develop, make and keep habitable this area. In the nineteenth century the brothers of Huijbergen, from their Franciscan spirituality, contributed to the quality of life of a society characterised by poignant social and cultural inequality, by focusing on the education of vulnerable youth such as orphans, and pupils with many disabilities. .
Now, at this time, the viability of the earth is at stake. And again there are sensitive people who want to let their lives be determined by their concern for this quality of life. They do not draw their energy from fear or desire, but from a universal source of love that I like to call the Kingdom of God. Their way of life, sober, in communion and with daily prayer moments is not only sustainable for the climate but promotes the development of an inner freedom that allows you to remain receptive to the positive energy of His love and become less susceptible to the negative energy of fear and greed.
This development confirms my belief that Religious Life is simply too humane to disappear.