The Renovation The ministry is strong. The building is not.
The SSJE Monastery offers silence and sanctuary, a place to share an authentic experience of Godâ€™s love and mercy. To continue this ministry the Brothers need your help.
Only $1 Million to go. Three donors will match the next $1 million in new gifts or pledges. Any gift or pledge you make will be more than doubled. With your help the $10M+ renovation will happen.
980 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 â€˘ www.SSJE.org
Dear Friends of SSJ E, Over the decades, the SSJE Brothers have welcomed tens of thousands of souls. They have joined us in our daily round of prayer and worship. They have come seeking silence and sanctuary, guidance in prayer and spirituality, and a renewed vision for healing and wholeness in life. The Monastery has been well used. Our place in God’s future requires the renewal of the Guesthouse, Chapel, and Monastery enclosure. For our buildings to be safe, comfortable, quiet, and accessible for our guests, with adequate meeting space for our programs, working space for both our staff and Brothers, and living space for the Brothers – we must repair and renovate our 75 year-old structure. This plan enables our sharing in God’s mission of love and mercy in the world, to generously offer our life and labor to many more people for generations to come. For more than 140 years SSJE has been a community of prayer and action, available to God for the needs of the church and the world. Please join us in our renewal. We need your financial partnership. In the following pages we will describe how your investment in our future will bring a significant return: blessings to many people and, we pray, also to you. Faithfully yours,
Curtis G. Almquist, SSJE Superior
When I came into the Chapel I found stone and light: a magnificent stone space with light pouring through the stained glass. It takes you out of the bustle of life and lifts you up out of yourself to make you aware of the transcendent nature of the divine. Kristin LeMay
Our Renewal is in Our Need
Mark Brown SSJE Treasurer
It’s time for some major work on our buildings, which date from the 1920s and 30s, some crucial work. The original construction was enabled by gifts from Isabella Stewart Gardner and from the family of an SSJE Brother. Those funds are long past. We do not receive financial support from the national church or local diocese; we have always been sustained by individual gifts. We do not have capital funds for this crucial renovation; we are in a position of need. Even as we plan the renovation of our buildings, we are experiencing our own renovation: the renewing of our faith; the renewing of our self-understanding; the renewing of our sense of connectedness to the wider church; the renewing of our purpose, our mission. In the gospel Jesus sends out the seventy disciples without purse or bag or sandals. Earlier he sent out the twelve with “nothing for the journey”: no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra tunic. I’m beginning to understand why he sent them out in such vulnerability. The apostles were not to think of themselves as self-sufficient. For them to be effective in their ministry, they needed to be deeply dependent on the communities they served. Or, more precisely, interdependent. The communities they served needed the apostles’ message; and the apostles needed the material support of the communities they served. There was to be no condescension born of delusions of self-sufficiency, but a deepening awareness of mutual need born out of vulnerability. Those who helped the apostles would then become vital partners in their mission. A synergy of mutual need and mutual support was created. We “men of the moment” have plenty of sandals and the equivalent of staffs and bags and purses and food and even some money. But we don’t have what we need to accomplish the mission we believe God has given us. In our need, in our vulnerability, we are seeing more clearly how the tapestry of our life is woven into the greater tapestry of the church and the world. This interdependence is new and renewing. It’s how God’s new creation is unfolding in this moment. The real renovation here will be in our own souls. We depend on God. We also depend on you, for whom we give thanks to God! And that may be the best thing that ever happened to us.
A Vital Presence SSJE in the Monastic Tradition A Monastery is a “liminal” place where visitors and guests cross a threshold, a thin place dividing earth and heaven. People come on pilgrimage to monasteries looking, sometimes desperately, to discover where God may be found and known in their lives and in the world. The silence and experience of safety that characterizes monastic hospitality enables them to listen deeply; to rest; to speak with a monk and to God about the hopes, questions and burdens they are carrying in their souls; and to be fed, physically and spiritually. People come to monasteries to collect their lives in God’s presence from scatteredness and from the tyranny of urgent demands, to reflect on life’s purpose and direction, and to refocus and rekindle their relationship with God. A Monastery is counter-cultural. In a world permeated with violence, competition, and fear, a Monastery offers a haven for people to come together, to listen deeply to their own hearts, to see themselves and others in a new way, to regain a sense of life’s purpose, to locate their lives under the banner of God’s love, which encircles everyone. A Monastery is a place of transformation and healing. Monks offer a vision of hope and healing in a torn and troubled world. Students who come to us are looking to integrate their academic discipline with their awareness of God’s call on their lives. We also see many leaders – educators, pastors, therapists, health care professionals, attorneys, administrators, executives – seeking their own renewal. We offer sanctuary, especially in these days when so many people are deeply affected by conflict. We frequently hear our guests say, “I feel safe here.” “This is my spiritual home.” “I feel at peace here.” “This is where I really can hear God.” 4
Selection from Clerestory Windows in the Chapel representing men who were founders of Religious Orders Top: Saint Anthony, Saint Pachomius, Saint Basil the Great, Saint Augustine, Saint Benedict, Saint Columba Lower: Saint Dominic, Saint Francis of Assisi, Saint Ignatius Loyola, Saint Vincent de Paul, John Mason Neale, Richard Meux Benson
Our Mission Unfolding The SSJE Brothers live as a community of men giving our whole selves over to living the gospel of Jesus Christ. Rooted in the ancient monastic traditions of prayer and community life, and critically engaged with contemporary culture, we seek to know and share an authentic experience of God’s love and mercy. Silence and Sanctuary - The Building of our Future The Monastery is a place of silence and sanctuary. We welcome all who come, including them in our worship, meals, and fellowship. Guidance in Prayer and Spirituality - Enabling Spiritual Formation We offer guidance through preaching, teaching, retreats, workshops, and spiritual direction. We meet with students and others at critical stages of life, and with those whose vocations are in helping professions. Nurturing Vocations - Encouraging and Sustaining Men as Monks As a community of Brothers we live in an “intentional tension,” true since our founding in 1866. We live a traditional monastic life, shaped by prayer and worship and our vows. We also seek to be on the cutting edge, where the church and world intersect. A Vision for Wholeness - Witnessing to God’s Compassion, Reconciliation, and Justice We serve a wide spectrum of people, from the disempowered and marginalized to the influential and privileged. We are ministers of reconciliation, hope, and transformation, providing a healing bridge within the Anglican Communion and in various settings around the world. Our work helps people uncover their deepest desires, live with authenticity, and discover their place in the heart of God. In our work of prophetic advocacy, we broker gifts between various worlds, connecting people who experience different kinds of poverty with one another, yielding a net return of God’s blessing for all.
We strive to bring reconciliation where there is division – between peoples of different economic and social status, racial and ethnic heritage, religious beliefs or faith, embracing the diversity of God’s creation as a sign of God’s splendor and unity.
We are committed to justice in the stewardship of the earth’s resources and to advocacy for the poor and the sick, children and women, and those who are excluded or marginalized.
The Breadth of SSJE’s Reach SSJE’s influence on the prayer and spirituality of the Episcopal/Anglican Church has increased considerably in the last thirty years, by God’s grace and for a number of reasons:
• Monastery retreat programs and Saturday workshops, offered from September to June to parishes, various groups and individuals focusing on areas of prayer and spirituality, which are well-subscribed.
• Spiritual direction and pastoral care, offered to a multitude of leaders in the church who seek a place to encounter God and a refuge in their weariness from facing great demands and inevitable crises in their life’s vocation.
• Emery House, our rural retreat center and environmental sanctuary in West Newbury, Massachusetts, listed by USA Today as one of the top ten spiritual retreat houses in the United States.
• The Fellowship of Saint John, a network of nearly 900 men and women throughout the world who follow a personal rule of life, and are united to the Brothers in prayer, friendship, and through financial support.
• Mission work, with SSJE Brothers traveling throughout North America, the British Isles, the Middle East, and eastern Africa to dioceses, parishes, seminaries, and conference centers. Fellowship of Saint John Cross
The Breadth of SSJE’s Reach • Pilgrimages in the Holy Land led by SSJE Chaplains through our affiliation with Saint George’s College, Jerusalem, a continuing education center for the entire Anglican Communion.
• COWLEY PUBLICATIONS, the publishing house begun by SSJE, providing books on spirituality and reconciliation. www.Cowley.org
• The Cowley newsletter, the Brothers’ quarterly magazine, distributed in both printed and electronic formats, including sermons, teaching articles, and news about the life and mission of our brotherhood.
• www.SSJE.org, the Brothers’ website, with news, inspiration, virtual tours of the Monastery and Emery House, and links to Listen Online, Podcasts of the Brothers’ sermons and teaching.
• Women, to whom for many decades we have offered our welcome, deep respect, and empathy of soul, and whose leadership in both church and society we recognize as essential for living a whole life.
• Students, a focus in our ministry, who in turn become leaders, regularly joining the Brothers for worship, meals, retreats and seminars, and for spiritual direction.
• The House of Bishops, for whom Brs. Geoffrey Tristram, Curtis Almquist and Tom Shaw have served as chaplains in recent years, and in which Br. Tom Shaw has served since 1994 as the Bishop of Massachusetts. 8
Monastery Chapel My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples. Isaiah 56:7
The Chapel and the Original Construction The Guesthouse, Chapel, and Monastery Enclosure were designed by the esteemed architect Ralph Adams Cram. The Chapel was completed in 1936, the essence of the early Christian basilica on a small scale. Built in the French Romanesque style, Cram traces the history of Gothic architectural development in his use of arches and capitals, moving from the classic round Romanesque arches at the back of the chapel, supported by columns with stylized Doric capitals, to gently peaked arches in the choir, featuring columns with Ionic capitals (note the influence of the Art Deco movement), to the baldachino, with its classical Corinthian capitals. The Chapel reflects Cramâ€™s deep love of both the Romanesque and Norman styles. The Chapel is stunningly beautiful, and is experienced by many as a place where earth and heaven meet. The walls are selected local granite, with Indiana limestone for the pillars and arches. The floor in the back (the ante-chapel) is undressed slate, while the marble in the choir and sanctuary comes from Tennessee, Belgium, France, and Italy. The roof beams were once part of a wooden bridge over the Mystic River, pulled down about the time that the chapel was built. The Boston-based designer Charles J. Connick and his artisans created the chapelâ€™s stained glass windows.
Cram & Ferguson â€“ Architects July 9, 1936
The Need for Renovation To fulfill our mission in the 21st century, we must: • Rewire and replumb the entire complex. • Reinsulate the building for both temperature and sound. • Install environmentally-responsible heating/cooling systems. • Repair the leaking Chapel tower, roof, and walls. • Replace the windows in the Guesthouse and Monastery. • Refurbish restrooms in the Guesthouse and Monastery. • Make the Guesthouse, Chapel, and Monastery more accessible. • Light the Chapel tower to increase our visibility and availability. • and more… Sustainable Strategies The Brothers have committed to implement sustainable strategies in the areas of Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, use of Materials and Resources and Indoor Environmental Quality: • Install low-flow plumbing fixtures (toilets, sinks, showers) • Reduce heat loss by replacing insulation in attic/roof • Rewire old fixtures to be energy efficient • Replace 1930’s steam boiler system with high-efficiency Variable Refrigerant Volume (VRV) heating and cooling system • Install an energy recovery system • Choose materials with low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) • Reduce heat loss by replacing low-efficiency steel windows with insulated aluminum windows • Install energy-efficient lighting fixtures • Recycle construction waste materials 12
Internal and External Accountability The SSJE Rule of Life is a living document, a chapter of which is read aloud by the Brothers each day. The forty-nine chapters of the Rule (from the Latin regula, guide) informs every aspect of our life. It is descriptive of how we commit to live, and prescriptive when we fall short. The Rule is accessible at: www.SSJE.org The Superior, Chapter, and Corporations. The Superior is elected to serve a three-year term and may be re-elected for two additional terms. The Chapter, the governing body of professed Brothers, is convened periodically to make formal decisions, as outlined in the SSJE Statutes. Other forms of governance are elected or appointed: the Officers; the Community Council; the Community Steering Team; and the Cluster Leaders, who oversee different aspects of our work. The SSJE Corporation and its Directors, elected from among the life-professed Brothers, conform to the requirements of a 501(c)3 corporation under the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. SSJE also maintains a corporation in Canada, retaining funds for ministry in Canada and for our support of various ministry projects within the Anglican Church of Canada. The Bishop Visitor, the Rt. Rev. Arthur E. Walmsley (Bishop of Connecticut, ret.), forms a line of accountability between SSJE and the national Episcopal Church. The Bishop Visitor makes periodic visitations, makes an annual report to the House of Bishops attesting to our conformity to financial and inter-relational standards, and commending the spiritual health of the community. He shares an individual conversation with each Brother at least yearly. The Buildings and Grounds Committee of advisors are professionals who bring their expertise and experience in project oversight, budgeting, owner-labor and owner-neighbor relations, and architecture. A project manager has been hired to oversee the entire renovation endeavor. The Financial Advisors provide time and expertise to offer guidance pertaining to SSJE’s finances and fiduciary structure, and financial planning for the future. The Investment Committee, comprised of the four SSJE Brothers who are Officers of the SSJE corporation and professional investment advisors, oversees SSJE’s endowment portfolio. The investments are managed by Salem Capital, Woburn, Massachusetts and Pension & Wealth Management Advisors, Waltham, Massachusetts.
An annual audit is performed by Samet and Company PC, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. A copy of SSJE’s audited financial statement is available upon request.
Brs. Jonathan Maury, Geoffrey Tristram and Mark Brown
Seeking Your Partnership The $1.0 Million Match
Please Consider a Five Year Pledge
Three donors have challenged us to raise $1,000,000:
A Week $
$250,000 in one gift/pledge of $250,000
$250,000 in gifts/pledges in the $5,000-$100,000 range
$500,000 in gift/pledges in any amount Every gift/pledge matters and will be more than doubled.
To make a pledge please use the pledge form or contact Mr. Jamie Coats, Director, Stone & Light Tel: 617.844.2244 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.ssje.org/snl and click Pledge Pledges can be paid by check, credit card, direct debit, online and stock transfer.
Message from the SSJE Stewardship Co-Chairs & Friends On behalf of the Brothers we appeal for your wholehearted participation and are writing to ask you to be as generous as you possibly can in making a pledge or a gift now. The magnificent 75-year-old building, which many of us have come to see as a physical manifestation of much of our spiritual growth and well being, is at great risk. The Brothers are present to us when we are at the Monastery, and they support us in prayer when we are not there. They have never asked for anything in return, save the knowledge that they have served Our Lord, Jesus Christ “with all their strength.” Very simply, we are now given the opportunity to express to them and the God we all serve our gratitude, support and love. After so many years of giving to us, it is their turn to ask us for our help. Thus we ask you to do what we have strived to do: examine your temporal resources and determine what sacrifices you can willingly make to ensure not simply the properties on Memorial Drive, but the continuation of SSJE’s extraordinary ministry. This is our moment to respond in faith and hope, The Rev. Dr. Mark Anschutz & Ms. Barbara Braver
I love to worship at the monastery and take retreats there because I feel it is a safe place, such sanctuary. It gives me permission to be who I am, as a more contemplative person. The Rev. Anoma Abeyaratne
The SSJE Monastery offers me a sense of security. No matter how busy, or how far away, or how troubled my life might be, I know there is a place in the world where someone is praying, praying for me, and praying for this world. Now and again I look into my memory of my brothers praying their daily office, and I feel a sense of calm. Dr. José Hidalgo
I am thankful to those brothers of days gone by who made the decision to locate the monastery in the midst of an academic hub. And I am thankful to the brothers of today, who pray for students, work with them, and strengthen those of us who work with them in so many ways. The Rev. Amy McCreath
Being invited into Christ’s love and fellowship is the great gift the brothers of SSJE offer us. I pray that all who wrestle with doubt and despair will find a community whose compassion helps remind them of the existence of God’s unfailing love. In my prayers I give thanks that such a community found me. Mr. James Meeks
SSJE’s Stone & Light
980 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 Tel: 617.844.2244 • email: email@example.com • www.ssje.org/snl and click Pledge
Photo: Albert Cook