Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell in unity.” 


Thus proclaims King David in his psalm of praise to God. This sentiment is so true for any family and most especially for a religious house; it rings true for where the Canons Regular of the Immaculate Conception call home. The community’s house of formation and novitiate, named after Dom Adrian Greá the community’s founder, is a wonderful place of spiritual refreshment and religious instruction. Though the house was originally built to house a single family, it has lent itself to being modified to accommodate an ever growing community. But, as the numbers of the community have continued to grow, it has been noticed by many that the house may have come to its limit on what it can hold. What a glorious problem to have!

As many of you may have already heard, the Canons Regular community has welcomed God’s blessing of 7 new postulants in the summer of 2020. For many years the community had prayed for an increase in vocatons to the community’s religious way of life. Little did the community know that it would take a worldwide pandemic for their prayers to be answered! But as in all things, God works in mysterious ways; none more mysterious than right now. 

This increase in numbers has brought about many new realities: where will everyone live?, what will we do with more men coming?, how will we accommodate this growth?, how will we pay off the mortgage on the house?, what would a new community house look like and how would we pay for it? All of these are good questions that show forth the reality of a community that is growing and looking toward the future. This hopeful future can only be realized, however, with the help of benefactors and friends journeying with the community. And this is where you come in!

The Dom Greá house of formation in Santa Paula is a grand house from the outside, but when one walks inside one realizes that this house was meant for a religious community. At the present moment there are 12 members of the community living in the house. The house has 7 cells/bedrooms and 2 dormitory rooms which can house 4 postulants each. There are currently two other open cells/bedrooms in the house. With the number of those interested in coming next year and the year after that, we are in need of more space and soon! 

“But how will more space really help the local catholic population and the wider church?” you may ask? Well let’s look at the numbers for a moment. In two years, with the house at capacity, we could possibly have somewhere in the ballpark of 20 people in the Dom Greá house of formation. This means that in 5+ years, there will be an increase in the number of priests in the Valley and many more priests to serve the various churches in the valley and the wider catholic population. But, since it takes 5+ years to become a fully professed member of the community and ultimately a priest, it means that once we are at capacity we will not be able to welcome any new men into the community. Because of this, the community has realized that we need to pay off the mortgage for the Dom Greá house and look toward building a new community house where more aspirants, postulants, novices, those in temporary vows, and fully professed brothers and priests can “dwell in unity” together. 

Anyone who has a growing family knows the expenses that come with growth, but these expenses are far outweighed by the joy that comes from a growing family. With our growing family, the expenses have increased almost overnight. This is why it is imperative that we pay off the mortgage attached to our house of formation as soon as possible so that the community may be free to continue its ministry to two (and maybe more) perishes in the Santa Clara Valley. Paying off the mortgage will also free the leaders of our community to shift their focus to future expansion and growth and look to building a community house or canonry that will be built to the requirements and standards of religious community, thus allowing the community to accept all those that God may send us.


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