A Monk of Ideas Makes His Profession

A few years ago, I was paying a visit to S. Clement’s Church here in Philadelphia for the Feast of the Ascension when a friend approached me to say that one of my readers (this was in the days when I was contributing to another blog) was across the street and wanted to meet me.  “He’s about to go into the monastery,” he added.

And so that night I met the man who would one day become Br. Stephen, O. Cist.  In the course of our gathering, politics was bound to come up, and along with that subject we got around to the economists and philosophers who gravitated around the University of Chicago in the mid 20th century.  “Richard Weaver is a good one to start with,” said the future Br. Stephen.  “Read his book Ideas Have Consequences.”   I did, and it changed the way I look at the world—and, as I explain in the Raison d’Etre, Weaver’s thoughts are responsible for the name of this blog, although I probably don’t revisit Weaver’s themes often enough.

Br. Stephen and I have stayed in touch, and have enjoyed a productive give and take via email, deep philosophical conversations, and brutally honest dialogue about the search for wisdom, God, and a whole host of other goods that are presently out of fashion.  He is responsible for much of the improvement in the way I think—but all of my regression is my fault, I assure you.

Yesterday, on his birth-name day, Br. Stephen made his simple profession at the Monastery of Our Lady of Springbank.   Congratulations to you, Br. Stephen.


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