Sylvestrines

The Sylvestrines are an order of monks under the Benedictine rule forming the Sylvestrine Congregation within the Benedictine Confederation. The order was founded in 1231 by Saint Sylvester Gozzolini.

He was born at Osimo near Ancona and held a canonry there. About 1227 he resigned it to lead an austere eremitical life. Disciples came to him, and in 1231 he built a monastery at Montefano.

The rule was the Benedictine, but as regards poverty in external things, far stricter than the Benedictines. The order was approved in 1247 by Innocent IV, and at Sylvester's death in 1267 there were eleven Sylvestrine monasteries.

At a later date there were 56, mostly in Umbria, Tuscany and the March of Ancona. In 1907 there were nine Sylvestrine houses, one in Rome, and about 60 choir monks. Since 1855 they have had a house and a mission in Sri Lanka. Their habit is blue.They also have a house in Australia at Arcadia, Sydney. In September 2007, a priest, Fr Michael Kelly OSB, from that monastery was elected as the new Abbot General of the Congregation. He holds that position in Rome for twelve years.

References

*Helyot, 1718. "Histoire des ordres religieux", vi. c. 21
*Heimbucher, Max, 1907. "Orden und Kongregationen", i. 30
*Wetzer und Welte, nd. "Kirchenlexicon", 2nd ed.
*1911


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