“You are among the last young people who recognize that the love of learning and desire for God goes together,” Rev. Romanus Cessario, O.P. told students at lecture held on November 14. “Now that is a remarkable gift. You must think of yourselves as inheritors of a long tradition. What you’ve got is not some pious Catholic thing.”
Rev. Cessario is a professor at St. John’s Monastery in Boston and a fellow of the Pontifical Academy of Saint Thomas Aquinas. In addition to numerous articles and reviews, he has authored, coauthored, or edited several books, including The Moral Virtues and Theological Ethics and Introduction to Moral Theology.
His lecture aimed “to defend a controversial thesis by Benedictine monk, Dom Jean Lecercq, that every authentic Christian approach of knowledge remains monastic in character,” he said.
Rev. Cessario explained that by studying the liberal arts in a monastic-like society such as Christendom, the love of truth is infused into everyday life. This link to monasticism has been all but lost in modern western society making places like Christendom rare.
“This monastic-like living that kindles the development of monastic hearts through a moral life, asceticism, and prayer.
“The fact that the love of learning and desire for God goes together is part of the patrimony of the West and arguably of the Church, both East and West to the extent that monasteries have always served as a place to both inculcate the love of God and to develop and promote learning,” he said.
Rev. Cessario concluding by saying that education needs the monastery. “There has to be contemplatives. There has to be people who devote themselves exclusively to God, because otherwise the rest of us will forget—as the world has forgotten.”
This amazing lecture can be heard at Christendom on iTunes U.