Please join us in our Prayer for Canada

God our Saviour, we desire to do your will.
Help our Order to plan wisely for our continuing ministry in Canada.
Hear us to discern our path, to find new ways and places to serve, and to live with integrity
so that others will be enabled to share our monastic commitment and values;
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Welcome

Holy Cross Priory is a monastery of the Order of the Holy Cross, a community founded in 1884 by the Rev. James Otis Sargent Huntington to provide a specifically North American expression of monasticism for Anglicans.

The Priory houses a small community in a Victorian-style home near Toronto’s scenic High Park. Members of the community participate in a daily cycle of prayer, study, and work. We have a number of guest rooms and provide hospitality as well.

Members of the community are available to lead retreats and quiet days at Parishes and other locations. We also offer quiet days, days of prayer, and other programs at the Priory.

The Order has had a ministry in Canada since the 1890′s. Holy Cross Priory was founded in 1973.

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In the Priory’s Christmas 2018 newsletter, Br. David Bryan writes:

The beloved bidding prayer for the Cambridge Advent Festival of Lessons and Carols says:

“…and because this of all things would rejoice his heart, let us at this time remember in his name the poor, the helpless, the hungry and the oppressed, the sick and those who mourn, the lonely and the unloved, the aged and the little children; and all those who know not the Lord Jesus, or who love him not, or by sins have grieved his heart of love.”

May we allow ourselves to encounter God’s grace during this hallowed time. The encounter might come as we hear the majestic words of holy scripture or the beauty of music; perhaps in the solemnity of ritual, colour and forms of decoration or in loving acts and generous care for others, and in places and times of quiet prayer.

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On December 8, Br. David Bryan led an Advent Quiet Day at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Toronto. The Advent Quiet Day is an annual event co-sponsored by the Priory, St. John’s West Toronto and St. Martin-in-the-Fields.

Top row, L-R: The Rev'd. Samantha Caravan, Incumbent, St. John's West Toronto; the Rev'd. Canon Philip Hobson, Incumbent at St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Bottom row, L-R: The Rev'd. Canon Harold Nahabedian, Honourary Assistant at St. Martin-in-the-Fields; Br. Christian, our senior brother at the Priory; Br. David Bryan, our Prior and Guestmaster.

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On October 22 our Brother Leonard -- shown here in the Priory kitchen -- left for Ghana, Africa, to begin a new part-time ministry in the Diocese of Cape Coast at the invitation of it’s Bishop, the Rt. Rev'd Dr. Victor Atta-Bafffoe. For the next three years Leonard will spend 6 months each year providing Christian Education in Parish communities throughout the Diocese, returning to his ministries here in Canada for the remaining months. This is a wonderful opportunity for Br. Leonard to return to his roots in the Ghanaian Church which he so loves. We brothers pray blessing on his new work.

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Br. Charles represented the Priory community at the Clothing of Sister Suzanne Marie as a Novice in our sister order, The Sisterhood of St. John the Divine, Toronto.


Br. Charles was invited by Fr. Nico Montelbetti, a Holy Cross Priory Associate, to Preside at the Sunday Eucharist at St Luke’s Church Coxwell Ave, Toronto, and to speak about Monastic Life and the Order of the Holy Cross. From L-R: Trinity College Divinity Student Adam Brown; Fr. Nico; Br. Charles; Philip Benmore, also a Trinity College Divinity Student.


Br. Reginald completed a year and a half as the Head of the Interim Ministry Team for St. James the Apostle in Brampton, Ontario on Sunday, September 30. From L-R: Br Reginald and The Rev’d. Ron Duncan as they process out from the Sanctuary on Br. Reginald’s last Sunday at St. James.


Br Charles was a Clergy Presenter at the Consecration of The Rt. Rev’d. Andrew Asbil as the new Bishop of Toronto on September 29, 2018 at St. James Cathedral, Toronto. Here Br. Charles and Bishop Elect Asbil wait for the Procession to begin.


The Priory was honoured to host The Most Rev. Daniel Yinkah Sarto, Primate and Metropolitan of the Anglican Province of West Africa - a long time Holy Cross Associate - who spent two weeks in community with us at the Priory. Here Archbishop Daniel blesses the “First Fruits” from Br. Leonard’s garden.


Holy Cross Priory Associates Wen Li Fei and Jonathan Cowans join Archbishop Daniel Yinkah Sarfo, Primate and Metropolitan of the Anglican Province of West Africa, following our regular Saturday evening "First Eucharist of Sunday".


Fr. Philip Bewley, an Anglican priest in the Diocese of Melbourne, Australia, was with us in community for the second time in two years. He explains: "Why have I travelled halfway around the world to Toronto? The answer lies in Fr. Henri Nouwen, one of the great spiritual writers of the 20th C. I am a student in the PhD program at Melbourne’s University of Divinity, my aim being to explore Nouwen’s life and spirituality for our present times. After his death in 1996, his personal papers were housed at the Kelly Library in Toronto, hence my need to travel to Toronto for my research. Thank you, once again to the brothers at Holy Cross Priory for their wonderfully warm hospitality, enhanced even more by the offering of monastic prayer and the daily Eucharist.


Once again this year’s Holy Cross Day celebration was hosted by our next door neighbour St John’s, West Toronto. Our thanks to our good friends, The Rev’d. Samantha Caravan and the St. John’s community for their always generous hospitality.


The Rev’d Louise Peters, Vicar of St. James Cathedral, Toronto was the Homilist at this year’s Holy Cross Day Celebration on September 15. Here is a brief quote: "Today we exult the Holy Cross of Christ as the symbol of our salvation. The Cross, an instrument of Death, becomes through God’s foolish power the instrument of Life! But how can God’s foolishness save us once again? The Cross invites us - compels us - to live our salvation daily - to live, to die to self, to rise again in glory every single day.”

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From the Priory’s autumn 2018 newsletter:

“What do you desire?”

That’s the first question you’re asked when you’re received as a postulant, when you receive the habit as a novice, and you’re asked it again when you make the three-fold Benedictine vow of obedience, stability, and conversion of life to the monastic way.

The question of desire drives the Benedictine Way, and indeed the Christian Way. In his Rule for Monks, Benedict gives a very simple and very challenging answer: prefer nothing whatever to Christ.

You see, Benedict knew that, contrary to the image of monasticism in popular culture as a dour and serious life, the monastic life is really a love affair. For fifteen hundred years Benedict’s rule has provided a structure and a context for pursuing the deepest longing of the heart for wholeness and unity in God. The Christian mystical tradition calls this search the pursuit of “purity of heart,” though we might more accurately describe it as “unity of heart,” which is to say the uniting of our entire being

An excerpt taken from the sermon preached by Br. Aidan Owen on St. Benedict’s Day, July 11, 2018, at the General Convention of the Episcopal Church in Austin, Texas.

Download the full Holy Crosstide 2018 newsletter here

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