Cluny Abbey - the islamic link to Christian France

Islamic knowledge contributions to Medieval Europe were numerous, affecting such varied areas as art, architecture, medicine, agriculture, music, language, and technology. From the 11th to 13th centuries, Europe absorbed knowledge from the Islamic civilization. The Benedictin monastery at Cluny played an important part.

Bernard de Clairvaux - 900 years at Citeaux

The ninth centenary of Bernard de Fontaine’s entry into the Abbey of Cîteaux (1112 or 1113?) was celebrated during the Vocations Year 2012-2013. After founding Clairvaux Abbey in 1115 Bernard became better known as Bernard de Clairvaux, the spiritual leader of the Cistercian Order and (after 1127) of the Order of the Knights Templar.

On this occasion Dom Olivier, abbot of present day Cîteaux Abbey, has asked to pass on the following invitation to all the members of the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance O.C.S.O.. This request is relayed here in full.
"Our community is going to celebrate the ninth centenary of St Bernard’s entering of Cîteaux (1112 or 1113?). To mark the event, we are setting up a campaign of prayer for vocations, from 20th August 2012 to 20th August 2013. We invite you to join us with this prayer:


Most gracious Father,
in setting up the New Monaster your fathers followed the poor Christ into the desert.
Thus they lived the Gospel
by rediscovering the Rule of Saint Benedict in its purity.

You gave Bernard of Fontaine
the ability to make this new life attractive and appealing to others,
in the joy of the Holy Spirit.

Grant that we today, after their example,
may live our charism deeply
in a spirit of peace, unity, humility,
and above all, in the charity which surpasses all other gifts.
May men and women of our time
be newly called to follow the Gospel in monastic life,
in the service of the Church’s mission,
and in a world forgetful of You.

Remember Lord, Cîteaux,
where Bernard arrived with his companions.
May the brothers there
continue to live in the enthusiastic and generative spirit of the founders.

Remember all who live the Cistercian charism.

Remember all Cistercian communities,
those which are aging and those newly-born,
in all parts of the world, north and south, east and west.

Let them not lose courage in times of trial,
but turn to her whom Bernard called the Star of the Sea.

Holy Father,
from whom we have already received so much,
grant us again your blessing
that our communities may grow in numbers,
but above all in grace and in wisdom,
to your glory,
who are blessed for ever and ever.

sources text and illustration

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Troyes de Champagne - the jewish link to Cistercian and Templar origins

A Hebrew school of great importance, directed by the highest rabbinical authorities and attended by numerous students from various lands, especially Germany and France, flourished at Troyes in the twelfth century. Several synods whose ordinances were adopted in foreign countries assembled at Troyes about 1160. A blog on Jewish roots and Christian sequel and the link to Cistercian and Templar origins.