BENEDICT XVI: MAY EUROPE BE ABLE TO "REDISCOVER AND PROTECT" THE CHRISTIAN "PATRIMONY" (3)

The "great monastic movement" of Cluny gave birth to "a Europe of the Spirit" in the different regions of our continent, namely France, Italy, Germany, Spain and Hungary. "A success – said Benedict XVI – that was due to a high spirituality but also to some factors that favoured its development". Among them the Pontiff mentioned the fact that the monasteries under Cluny were "exempt from the jurisdiction of the bishop and placed directly under that of the Pontiff". By virtue of this "special bond with the See of Peter", the Order of Cluny could maintain and proclaim its "ideal of purity and fidelity" to the Gospel "without being influenced by civil authorities". As for the elements in the reform of Cluny that have led to a "deep renewal of the monastic life", the Pope mentioned "the great importance" attached to liturgy. "To preserve and nourish a climate of prayer", added the Pontiff, the Order of Cluny "stressed the importance of silence, that monks eagerly tried to keep, convinced as they were that the purity of virtues they were longing for demanded an intimate and constant meditation". Finally, the monks of Cluny enriched the liturgical calendar by inserting, for instance, the feast of All Souls". ” ” ” “

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