A Simple and Spiritual Life: Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy Trinity
Column by: Richard Rozman
Technology opens the world. Having a computer and connecting with anyone at any time is commonplace. I like the feeling of being
connected to the people and ideas of the world through technology. Learning about the world through technology makes me feel as if I am truly a citizen of the world. On the other hand, there are times when technology overloads me with all the possibilities. I want to know myself and my place in a world that is driven by technology. However, in order to do that, I need to know myself and my place in the world in a simple, spiritual, and connected way. I have found my way to connect and to understand a simpler existence, if only for a short time, and to experience a true connection to my spirituality. Each year, I make my own pilgrimage at Easter to a monastery known as Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy Trinity.
Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy
Trinity is the home of a Roman Catholic religious order of enclosed monks known as Cistercians. It is located in a peaceful valley hidden in the mountains of northeastern Utah. At Holy Trinity, fifteen monks, whose average age is 82 years with the oldest being 93 years old and the youngest 65 years old, presently live at the monastery which was founded in 1947 after World War II and at one time in the early 1950’s had a membership of over eighty members. The monks are currently lead by their sixth abbot Father David Altman who was elected by his fellow monks in 2007.
Each day at 3:15 a.m., the monks rise to begin their day of prayer and work. The monks feed and clothe themselves and earn their own living through farming and other industries
and crafts. Guests of the monastery are housed and fed by the monks who are assigned duties of cleaning and cooking. As much as possible, the monks try to do their own maintenance and repair work in the monastery and in the guest quarters. The monks who have been serving and praising God at Holy Trinity for sixty-five years are willing to share their lifestyle in Utah’s setting of solitude and natural beauty with guests.
I will be a guest at the monastery during the Easter weekend. I am staying at the retreat house at Holy Trinity which can house up to twelve adult men of all religions who seek a place of peace and quiet where they can reflect on their relationship with God, pray, and be renewed spiritually. There are no schedules at the retreat house. I will have time to read, exercise, rest, walk, and let the Lord Jesus speak to my heart. As a guest, I will share meals with the monks. Priests of the community are available for counseling and for the sacrament of reconciliation. My wife loves being at Holy Trinity. Women who wish to make retreats may use the family guest house at times when it is not in use by relatives of the monks. Retreats are usually limited to three days for people within the State of Utah. Someone coming from outside the State may make arrangements for a longer stay through the guest master. The abbey church is always open to guests for silent prayer and meditation. Guests are welcome to attend the chants of the monks and the celebration of the Eucharist. Guests make offerings to Holy Trinity to help with the costs of operating the abbey in lieu of paying fees for guest accommodations and services.
Due to new rulings and the aging population of the monks, the abbey no longer accepts novices. Consequently, a volunteer program which is open to unmarried, practicing
Catholic men in good physical and emotional health between the ages of twenty-five and fifty was created. While living the monastic lifestyle, volunteers assist the elderly monks with the daily chores and duties of the monastery. Room and board are provided without charge, but volunteers are responsible for providing their own health insurance. On the spiritual level, volunteers at Holy Trinity Abbey have the advantage of attending daily Mass and chanting of the Psalms, participating in weekly Eucharistic adoration, and taking instruction in spiritual wisdom by the monks who have walked with God in the monastic life for more than fifty years. More details about becoming a volunteer, being a guest, or donating to Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy Trinity are found on the website (http://www.holytrinityabbey.org/).
As this week marches on toward Holy Thursday and Good Friday, I prepared for my trip and think about Easter and all that is symbolizes. This is a very spiritual week in the Christian world and the Jewish world. Passover began on the evening of Monday, March 25 and will end in the evening of Tuesday, April 2. I look forward to spending this week in celebration of my spirituality and in reconnecting with my sense of self in a setting of solitude and natural beauty at Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy Trinity.
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THE ROZMAN EXPERIENCE with RICK ROZMAN
TODAY’S GUESTS FROM OLIVE CREST (Strong Families, Safe Kids)
WILLIAM BEDROSSIAN and TIM BAUER
Celebrating Olive Crest 40th Anniversary
Olive Crest is proud that we have strengthened our full continuum of care while actually expanding our
services to best meet the increasing needs of youth and families in the community. Our development of
programs such as Safe Families for Children and our Family Resource Centers are specifically aimed at
preserving families through community-based services and support. At Olive Crest, we believe that keeping
families strong keeps kids safe.
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The Rozman Experience dives into the realm of finance and philanthropy with host Rick Rozman. After 33 years in the world of finance and work with charitable and non-profit organizations, Rick has created a plan to enlist his fellow philanthropists and business leaders to offer advice on how to make a difference by focusing on the three T’s: time, talent, and treasure. Rick’s guests include the busiest Los Angeles movers and shakers who give their own time, talent, and treasure to unite the world through giving.
I had a amazing show today with my Rev. Andy Bales, who I am proud to call a friend. Please listen to this show click EZ WAY BROADCASTING to listen to it. I really hope that for those of you that listen to this, strongly think of helping in some way! Go to the featured show of the month link!
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Union Rescue Mission CEO Andrew (Andy) J. Bales, M.A.T.
Andy brings over 26 years of experience in community outreach and service to “his
homeless friends”, as Andy puts it, as he leads Union Rescue Mission into a new era of
unique and innovative services for Los Angeles’ Skid Row community.
Andy’s vision for the future of the Mission is most definitely in keeping with the Union
Rescue Mission’s long and distinguished history of service in the City of Los Angeles.
Established in 1891, the Mission has always served the most desperate men, women and
children of the community.
One of Andy’s earliest challenges as Mission leader was to assist in the developing of
transitional housing for mothers and their children living in the Mission’s downtown
facility and in neighboring SRO hotels in and around Skid Row. He is also committed to
providing permanent supportive housing for senior women away from the mean streets
of Los Angeles. Hope Gardens Family Center, in the foothills of the Angeles National
Forest near Sylmar, was developed to serve this growing population of abandoned
and desperately poor women with children and elderly women. The Senior Women’s
Permanent Supportive Housing facility at Hope Gardens was opened in August 2006.
The Women’s and Children’s Transitional Living Facility opened in late June of 2007.
As CEO of Union Rescue Mission, Andy has had a pivotal role in reshaping hospital and
governmental policies related to “dumping” of homeless patients from hospitals on to the
streets of Skid Row.
Andy’s present focus is organizing and working with community partners to make a
commitment to ending homelessness in Los Angeles by a significant number within the
next 7 – 10 years.
Andy has many awards and honors for his community service, including: being named
as the 930th Point of Light by President George Bush in 1992, receiving the 1999 Des
Moines NAACP Community Service Award, and receiving the 2004 Martin Luther King,
Jr. Award from the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance of Pasadena. He has been
featured in Leadership Journal’s article “Great to Good Churches”, CBS’s 60 Minutes,
NBC’s Dateline, CNN and Social Media, and is a frequent guest speaker at conferences,
schools, and clubs. Rev. Andy’s Blog (www.urmblog.org/category/rev-andys-blog/)
was awarded 1st place for media success by the Association of Gospel Rescue Mission’s
at their annual convention of 350 participating missions world-wide in 2008, 2009,
2010 and 2011. Andy was named the “2011 Fundraising Professional of the Year” by
Fundraising Success Magazine for fundraising achievement in 2010. Andy received the
Los Angeles Business Journal’s award for Nonprofit Leadership Excellence in June 2012.
Andy was named the 2011 Central Area Citizen of the Year by the Council of the City of
Los Angeles at its meeting on March 7, 2012. The Resolution was signed by the Mayor,
each City Council Member, the City Attorney, City Controller and City Clerk.
In June 2009, Cone, Inc. published the Cone Nonprofit Power Brand 100 Report. Union
Rescue Mission was listed in the top 100 brands at #94, ahead of national charities
such as: YWCA, United Cerebral Palsy Association and Camp Fire USA. When you
consider that there are 1.1 million registered non-profits in the U.S., the fact that URM
was listed at #94 is incredible. Andy’s personal participation in embracing social media
opportunities has been credited for the Mission success in receiving this distinction.
Andy and wife Bonnie (a nurse) have six grown children, and delight in their
grandchildren, Elijah and Ava Marie. Also, Andy and Bonnie often open their home to
I hope you can find sometime to listen to this show. It will touch your heart what they are doing for these kids
Our story begins with the founder, Omar Mcgee, who grew up on the hardened streets of Flint, Michigan during the height of the crack epidemic in the 1980’s. The baby of eight children, Omar was exposed to the harsh realities of divorce, drugs, violence, and alcoholism that plagued his surroundings and family.
Rising above his circumstances he went on to attend Howard University where he started his non-profit organization which is now Inner City Outreach. His original mission was to provide support to low income and inner city youth in need of financial assistance for secondary education due to his own struggles. He went on to achieve success in real estate development and a burgeoning film career which includes the award winning film, Flintown Kids, which gives accounts of life through the eyes of kids in the town labeled, The Worst Place to Live in America by Money Magazine. His heart however led him to abandon aspirations of a Hollywood film director and return to his roots, empowering youth whose backgrounds mirrored his.
He decided he wanted to provide the support system that many inner city youth lacked who actually made it to college– by starting his influence at the 9th grade through the creation of Executive Prep Academy to build the proper foundation for success. Through Innercity Outreach, and now, Executive Prep Academy of Finance, Omar is able to fulfill his mission to provide all students with what he was not afforded, their right –to obtain a world-class education.