Any female who is considering the religious life and is interested in a contemplative community may wish to consider the Benedictines at Priory of Our Lady of Ephesus in Missouri.
United with Our Lady at the foot of the Cross, the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles seek above all else, a life of union with God in prayer as guided by the Rule of St. Benedict.
Totally consecrated to the Queen of Apostles, we take Our Lady’s hidden life at Ephesus as an inspiration for our own. We seek to be what she was for the early Church: a loving and prayerful support to the Apostles, the first priests, and daily offer prayer and sacrifice for the sake of her spiritual sons.
In the company of Our Lady we contemplate the great High Priest, interceding for the sacred priesthood.
Customary Benedictine hospitality is an integral part of our life. Particular attentiveness is given to welcoming priests, the apostles of our day, and our retreat quarters are principally intended for them. Our hope is that they will find what the Apostles found at Our Lady’s home at Ephesus: encouragement, and a spiritual haven conducive to rest and prayer.
We have been richly blessed by God thus far with vocations, zealous young women imbued with the call to offer their lives to Jesus, through Mary, on behalf of all priests.
Our community first began under the aegis of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter in 1995, in the Diocese of Scranton, Pennsylvania. We were originally called the Oblates of Mary, Queen of Apostles for a two-fold reason. First, to indicate the offering of ourselves to the Benedictine family (Oblatae is Latin for “offered”). And secondly, because we had consecrated ourselves to Our Lady, and offered ourselves to her service. We began following a monastic horarium as laid out by St. Benedict in his Rule, and chanting in Latin, the Divine Office according to the 1962 Breviarium Monasticum.
In March 2006, we accepted the invitation of Bishop Robert W. Finn to transfer to his diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph in Missouri. We were established as a Public Association of the Faithful with the new name, “Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles”.
Having received our call to emulate Our Lady in her final, hidden years, we offer our lives in prayer and sacrifice for priests. These are the new apostles of the Church who bear her truth to the world. We anticipate the coming of the Lord as Our Lady anticipated her Assumption, singing the psalms as she did, until we are admitted into the life of endless praise that is to come. In the meantime, we extend customary Benedictine hospitality most especially to priests, our spiritual sons, and strive to offer them the spiritual refurbishment so often denied them in their zealous work. We hope to see them return to the vineyard with renewed ardor to win souls. We have left all to be one with Christ, our Spouse, and we repeat what He Himself said of His newly ordained: “And now I am not in the world and these are in the world, and I come to Thee. Holy Father, keep them in Thy name which Thou hast given me; that they may be one as we also are.” (Jn. 17:11)