Friday, January 13, 2012

Br. Linus Klucsarits Makes First Vows at St. Bernard Abbey

January 6, 2012 – On the Feast of the Epiphany, Abbot Cletus Meagher, OSB, of St. Bernard Abbey received the first vows from Br. Linus Klucsarits. Given the name of Paul Thomas Klucsarits at his baptism, he took the new name of Br. Linus to begin his journey in religious life at St. Bernard Abbey in Cullman.

After the homily, Fr. Kevin McGrath, OSB, presented Br. Linus to Abbot Cletus. During the ceremony, Br. Linus sang the psalm verse, “Uphold me, O Lord, according to your promise and I shall live; let my hope in you not be in vain” and the monastic community responded with the same. He then received the monastic habit and a copy of the Rule of St. Benedict. The ceremony concluded with the sign of peace.

Br. Linus, the son of Mr. and Mrs. William Klucsarits, came to St. Bernard from Allentown, PA. He is the second of five children.

A product of Catholic schools, Br. Linus attended St. Charles Seminary in Philadelphia, PA, and is an alumnus of Gallaudet University where he earned a BA in philosophy and obtained his MA in sign language interpreting. He is currently a graduate student at UAB where he is preparing to teach “English as a Second Language (ESL).

Br. Linus is quick to say that this is not his first time being in a monastery. “I was a monk at St. Vincent Archabbey in Latrobe, PA. Basically it was a little too big for me. I was looking for a smaller community. I left there and worked for a couple of years at Western Pennsylvania School for the Deaf, where I was the lead interpreter and coordinator of the interpreter services for the deaf staff.“

It was during these two years that his spiritual advisor asked him to consider monastic life at St. Bernard. Br. Linus commented, “Monastic observance has been most impressive at St. Bernard. I enjoy how the monks chant the office, and are very faithful to the praying of the office, the public prayer of the monastery.”

Abbot Cletus and the monks of St. Bernard Abbey welcomed Br. Linus into the community on July 11, 2011. During this time before his vows he worked in the monastery and taught freshman religion in the high school.

For the forty-six year old monk, his days are now spent doing assigned chores around the monastery and using his morning time to do reading, graduate work, and getting ready for class. “We have mid-day prayers, and in the afternoon I teach in the high school,” he said. “We have mass at 5 pm, vespers at 5:30 and compline at 7 p.m.”

Br. Linus continued, “By taking first vows, which is a commitment for three years, my desire is to bond more completely with the community and really become a part of the community at St. Bernard Abbey.”

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