Our Life, Our Spirituality, and our Apostolate
The Canons Regular of the Immaculate Conception is a religious congregation of priests and brothers. We faithfully maintain the ideal of St. Augustine and the tradition of our founder Dom Adrien Grèa. We are committed to living the apostolic life in common, working in the parish ministry, and fostering the love of the Sacred Liturgy.
We make every effort to realize an authentic life lived in common. The grace of baptism, by incorporating us into Christ, has made us one with our brothers. Therefore, we desire to take as our model the life of mutual love of the most Holy Trinity, and we want this authentic communion of life to be a prophetic sign of the life that will unite us all together in heaven.
Our spirituality is that of the Church, sustained by the Word of God expressed through the richness of the Holy Liturgy and through a deep devotion, both in our liturgical and personal prayer, in particular the Rosary, towards the Mother of God, Queen of the Apostles and of the saints, teacher of the interior life and of contemplation, patroness of our congregation. We have always remained obedient to the Holy Father and faithful to the Magisterium.
The parish ministry is an integral part of our vocation. Pope St. Pius X, when approving the Constitutions of the Canons Regular of the Immaculate Conception, stated: “This type of priestly life that unites the pastoral ministry and the religious life, is truly admirable and is to be commended. Far from being opposed to each other they strengthen and fortify each other … to the great advantage of the people.”
Even though we are not monastic we nevertheless have a semi-monastic spirit, which is reflected particularly in our prayer life. We do wear our habits as well as the normal clerical attire. We are not a missionary congregation and so our religious remain associated to the regional communities in which they entered into formation.
“The first apostolate and the primary source of all holiness
is the Sacred Liturgy of the Church”
(Pope St. Pius X)
Since liturgical celebration is at the heart of all pastoral activity we pay special attention and care to the Sacred Liturgy, which gives grace to man and glory to God. Pope Saint Pius X affirms that “the first apostolate and primary source of all holiness is the sacred liturgy of the church.” “For the liturgy, ‛through which the work of our redemption is accomplished,’ most of all in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist” (Sacrosanctum Concilium §2), “the source and summit of the whole Christian life” (Lumen Gentium, §11). Today we strive to bring a greater understanding and love of the Sacred Liturgy.
Our love of the Sacred Liturgy and our desire to give divine worship its true and worthy place is expressed in the solemnity due every liturgical celebration. With the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which is the principal and central act of the Sacred Liturgy, and the Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours), particularly at Lauds (Morning Prayer) and sung Vespers (Evening Prayer), we sanctify each morning and each evening with our prayer. We begin our day when we pray Matins (Office of Readings) and pause at midday with Sext (Midday Prayer). We conclude our day with Compline (Night Prayer) and the beautiful Latin hymns to our Blessed Mother. We invite the faithful to take an active part in the sublime mysteries of the altar as well as their participation in the Divine Office.
It is here that we draw, as from an unquenchable source, our fervor, our fidelity, our joy and the strength needed for our pastoral activity.
“For the liturgy,
‘through which the work of our redemption is accomplished,’
most of all in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist.”
(Vatican II, Sacrosanctum Concilium, §2)