Any third orders that live together?


Anyone ever hear of members of third orders living with their respective religious communities? Thanks for any replies.


Benedictines have something called Claustral Oblates. They don’t take permanent vows the way a monk or nun does, but make promises for a year at a time. I don’t know if all Benedictine monasteries have provisions for this type of situation, but at least some do. See this section pertaining to one Benedictine congregation:


I know of a group of Third Order Dominicans who live in community. They live in New Hope, Kentucky, and do pro-life work. There are families as well as singles in the group.

You can find them on the Institute for Religious Life site.


The TOR (Third Order Regular) Franciscans who run Franciscan University of Steubenville live together in community.


Talbot's people do.

Google John Michael Talbot Brothers and Sisters of Penance.


Yes, although the two examples I know of involved retired men who were past the age of being accepted as monks.

Brother Benedict Lang for his final oblation. Brother Benedict was a married man for most of his life. He and his wife and children were all good friends of our Monastery. When his wife, Martha, died, he began to think about joining the Monastery. He entered our community in late 2005. Instead of making full monastic vows, he will be what we call a �Claustral Oblate.� A Claustral Oblate is a man who for one reason or the other has been accepted to live our monastic life but who does not make vows. Instead he makes promises and is free to leave at any time. He lives a full monastic life just as the rest of us do. He is able to keep his own financial accounts but can only use them with permission of the Abbot. Brother Benedict will make his final oblation on March 24th, which is also his 88th birthday!

Harry (70 years old) is a Benedictine oblate living the life of a monk at Saint Leo Abbey. Like his religious brothers, he heeds the 1,500-year tradition of The Rule of St. Benedict, guidelines written by the sixth-century Italian monk who founded the community. Unlike his brothers, he has taken no solemn vows.

He joins the monks for prayers and chants five times a day, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. He works as the abbey’s sacristan, preparing the priest’s vestments for Mass and taking care of the altar vessels.

It’s not what Harry planned for his retirement years. But a month before he was scheduled to end his 41-year career with Air Canada, his wife, Maryanne, died unexpectedly. Their three children were adults, on their own. No one at home relied on Harry any longer. He had to redefine himself.

He believes God led him here. It’s a perfect fit.


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