Norbertines to branch out in Illinois
Bishop Paprocki invites them to Springfield

2022-03-11T13:04:00-08:00March 12th, 2022|California Diocese News|

The Norbertines’ St. Michael’s Abbey in Orange County has seen major growth in recent years, and that growth will continue in Illinois. Plans are underway to establish a new community in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois that will include a new center for Catholic spirituality and the formation of teachers of Catholic religion.

“We have developed a strong relationship with the Norbertine Fathers of St. Michael’s Abbey over the past several years, and we are thrilled to welcome them to our diocese,” Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of Springfield in Illinois said in a March 3 statement. “The Norbertines are a vibrant and growing community of holy men, and their presence and apostolic work will be a great blessing to the people of our diocese and to this region”

Abbot Eugene Hayes, O. Praem., who heads St. Michael’s Abbey, told Catholic News Agency March 4 that he looked forward to working closely with the bishop and supporting “his bold plans of evangelization in and around his diocese.” For the Norbertines, he said, a new community in Illinois will mean “sharing with the faithful in the Diocese of Springfield the intellectual and spiritual gifts with which God has bestowed on the Norbertines of St. Michael’s Abbey through its many vocations to the religious life and priesthood.”

The Norbertine, or Premonstratensian, Fathers of St. Michael’s Abbey recently finished construction on a new abbey in eastern Orange County, after a $120 million fundraising campaign. However, the abbey is at full capacity, with almost 50 priests and 40 seminarians.

“In light of the growth in our community, we had already been discerning the possibility of establishing a new community when Bishop Paprocki approached us,” the abbot said March 3. “After prayerful discernment as a community, we have joyfully accepted Bishop Paprocki’s invitation, and we are grateful for the opportunity to establish a presence in the Springfield diocese.”

The Norbertines will help establish the new community on the grounds of the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis on the northeast side of the city of Springfield, the state capital. The Springfield diocese has announced plans to establish the Evermode Institute, located on the same grounds, to serve as a center for Catholic spiritual and intellectual formation….

The planned Evermode Institute is named for the 12th century St. Evermode, a close collaborator of the Premonstratensians’ founder, St. Norbert. Evermode is known for his “great and effective works of evangelization and formation in the Catholic faith,” the Springfield diocese said. The planned institute will provide formation for lay and ordained teachers of the Catholic faith….

The above comes from a March 9 story on the site of the Catholic News Agency.


  1. miserably bad March 12, 2022 at 10:48 am - Reply

    Meanwhile, we have to put up with praise and worship music performed by third-rate singers and musicians at my parish. Why doesn’t the church take worship seriously? Why is Mass so miserably bad all over the country?

    • you? March 13, 2022 at 4:58 pm - Reply

      Jerry Seinfeld?
      Is that you?

  2. Imagine the boom March 12, 2022 at 11:51 am - Reply

    Coincidentally, today in history… in 1994 the church of England ordained women for the first time as priests. Imagine the boom in priestly vocations that would occur if the Catholic church did the same

    • Imagine there's no heaven... March 13, 2022 at 5:46 pm - Reply

      Imagine the boom, or the bust,
      There are reasons of Divine revelation, Tradition and history to not ordain women. And, communities like this Norbertine community are growing.
      That said, in this country, the Episcopalian church, the church of England here, started ordaining women in 1974. They have been in decline ever since. Not long ago, when Episcopalian leaders met, the Episcopal News Service offered these blunt words from the Rev. Dwight Zscheile, an expert on church renewal and decline: “The overall picture is dire – not one of decline as much as demise within the next generation. … At this rate, there will be no one in worship by around 2050 in the entire denomination.”
      Imagine that.
      I’m not claiming that’s the only reason for their decline, but it is a contributing factor. And, this is a free country and no one is compelled to stay in the Catholic Church if they disagree with her teachings. I’m not recommending it, but anyone is free to stop attending the Catholic Church and join the church of Henry’s hormones (as some Anglicans have joked about their ecclesial community).

    • won't last March 13, 2022 at 12:22 pm - Reply

      That’s fine for FSSP, but diocesan parishes have to go Novus Ordo only.

      The FSSP won’t last.

      • No Axe to Grind March 14, 2022 at 9:13 am - Reply

        won’t last, how do you know that?
        Maybe you should follow the advice of the Jewish teacher Gamaliel, “If it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.” (Acts 5:39)
        God knows things that you and I don’t. Why not simply let Him “decide?”
        BTW, I don’t attend the TLM, but in a world and Church in crisis, I think we need to focus on things other than shutting down Masses that some people find edifying.

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