Ministry is Where We Find It
In our latest video, "Ministry is Where We Find It," senior Passionists Fr. Alfred Pooler and Fr. Fred Sucher talk about their life and ministry, and the care senior Passionists receive at Sacred Heart Monastery in Louisville, Kentucky.
A Day in the Life of Senior Passionists
The 14 Passionist priests and brothers in residence at Sacred Heart gather each morning at 7:45 to pray the Liturgy of the Hours (the Office) before celebrating Mass at 8 a.m. The beautiful chapel fills with warm light that streams through the beautiful stained glass windows. The men’s voices resonate in prayer and a sense of peace envelopes the space.
After a community breakfast, the men head off in a variety of directions. Some of the more active Passionists leave for preaching or teaching assignments. But because Sacred Heart Monastery has been designated as the Province residence for senior or infirm Passionists, on any given day Fr. John Schork, the local superior, may be taking one of the senior Passionists
to a doctor’s appointment or conferring with the medical staff.
Then there is the building itself to be cared for - Fr. John or Bro. John Monzyk can often be found brainstorming with contractors about how to address a leaky roof, for example. Recently the Monastery’s single elevator needed a major upgrade, forcing senior Passionists residing on the third floor to relocate to the first floor during the repairs.
Fr. Fred Sucher at 95 is the oldest Passionist in Holy Cross Province. You will often find him in his room, absorbed in a book or working on his ongoing project -the translation of letters of Paul of the Cross from Italian to English. "My legs are weak," he says, but all agree that his mind is as strong as ever.
Twice a month the men gather for group exercise that
involves more than just leg and arm "reps." The exercise class is a great source of laughter and conversation.
While the community gathers again to pray in the early evening, you may also see a Passionist emerging from prayer in the chapel late at night after the others have gone to bed. Contemplation is a rich part of Passionist spirituality, along with community life and ministry. These senior Passionists are especially devoted to prayer and see their active prayer life as ongoing service to the Province and to our Passionist friends and benefactors.