» Yesterday Fr Abbot and Fr Oliver were at Westminster cathedral for the investiture of Donald Jackson as a papal Knight of St Gregory by Cardinal Vincent Nichols. Mr Jackson was recommended for this honour by Cardinal Nichols for his 20 years of work in the production of Collegeville's St John's Bible, a presentation on which was made to the Douai community last month. Donald Jackson has worked as a calligrapher for the Queen and the House of Lords and he persuaded the monks of St John's Abbey, Collegeville in Minnesota to sponsor this extraordinary work which is being shown around the world. Abbot John Klassen of Collegeville and three of his monks were present for the happy occasion. An example of Mr Jackson's calligraphy in the St John's Bible can be seen below.
» Recently Fr Abbot stumbled across what is the earliest known image of monks of our community. The image, almost certainly ours originally but lost to the state at the Revolution, is held by the Bibliothèque National in Paris, which has digitized it. Dating from 1653, it is the work of Laurent de La Hire, and shows King Louis XIV of France presenting the prior of the St Edmund's, Paris (probably Dom Augustine Latham) with royal letters patent. The Sun King would have been 15 at the time. The background is clearly the main salon at our Paris monastery, which is still substantially intact. A detail from the picture is below.
» This week we have been hosting the latest session of the training course for Vocation Guides conducted by the National Office of Vocation under Fr Christopher Jamison OSB of Worth Abbey.