Located along the coast, in the rhythm of prayer and work, the Benedictine nuns, popularly known as Koludrice, have been living their dedication to God and man for more than a millennium.
The ancient paths to the future
The establishment of the first monastic communities and the construction of Benedictine monasteries date back to the end of Antiquity. With its roots in ancient times, it flourished in the Middle Ages, and lives on until today. The rule by which ss. Benedictines says that not only a contemplative life leads to God, but also one that is closely related to the field of work and encourages the search for Christ in one's everyday life.Find out more
Living the primacy of prayer that the work supports, enlivens and authenticates, these communities were also other spiritual oases in the midst of the time that surrounds them. They generously distributed the fruits of both to everyone they met.
For centuries, the melodies of timeless Gregorian chant have echoed in their spaces, which testify to spiritual hunger and longing for the impermanent, but also a sense of the beautiful.
Sisters of St. Benedict
The reality of contemplative life is not monotonous and rigid. She is filled with meaning, with endless horizons for herself and others; initiated and supported by God's love, and shaped by our own cooperation.
The beneficent presence of the Benedictines manifested itself in many ways. Faithful to their mission, prayer and work, both manual and intellectual, they were carriers of culture and literacy. They founded schools in their areas, taught various trades and other skills. At the same time, they were silent listeners to many who turned to them in life's doubts and difficulties, trying to offer words of encouragement and comfort to everyone with prayer.Find out more
years of togetherness
The rule by which the Benedictine sisters live is the will of their founder and spiritual father St. Benedikta, who wants to awaken in a person the awareness of responsibility and the desire for creativity. To experience the feeling of sublimity and beauty of being and being called God's worker and collaborator. Benedict pays great attention to prayer, but equally to work. It predicts time for both and demands that it be respected.
members of the order
Eight autonomous female Benedictine monasteries form the Federation of Benedictine Nuns in Croatia, which numbers around sixty members of the order. The Federation strives to promote cooperation between communities and to contribute to the formation process of each of its members, which consists of upbringing and education. It also supports and enables various meetings and exchanges of experiences between nuns from different monasteries, and the process of formation has a gradual character and lasts a lifetime.
Benedictine monasteries used to be present in almost all areas of today's Croatia. We know for sure that there were about a hundred of them, and unofficially much more. To date, eight women's monasteries and one male monastery have been maintained. Surrounded by the natural beauty of the Adriatic Sea, the peace of cities and island towns, Benedictine monasteries are unique prayer atmospheres that still radiate and attract many.
Like the air he breathes, prayer is the core of a consecrated life for a monk. An inexpressible fullness that fills the heart, because without prayer all spiritual life is extinguished and disappears.
Liturgical prayer, Divine reading and work are the three components of a nun's life. In her life, she strives to be God's interlocutor through prayer, and through work, she strives to be God's co-worker. Koludrica does nothing by herself, but always together with God. With my own hands, and with the power of God.
What our day looks like
It begins and ends with prayer, a means of sanctifying oneself and others. The core is the prayer of the hours, and the climax is the Eucharistic celebration.
In the morning, the mystery of birth is renewed. It is the beginning of a new day when our being turns to the One from whom everything originated.
It responds to the human need for a good, noble, benevolent, strong, comforting and saving word.
Everything earthly is a barrier, but also a passage to God. The essence of the earthly is mediation. Consideration helps us see this.
It begins by giving thanks and asking for the blessing of the day ahead. In the center is Christ and his resurrection, to whom he directs his gaze and will.
It is the focal point of Christ's presence in which our whole life with its spiritual and physical elements is reflected and surrendered to.
It gives another incentive to make friends with God's word. At the same time, it calls for its embodiment in everyday life.
A short meal in silence and preparation for work activities.
Someone works for the sake of humanity, and someone for the sake of glory. The monk is called to belong to the first group, that is, to seek God's glory in his work.
At noon, the bell calls for prayer and a break from work. Koludrica devotedly turns to her Lord, the cause, initiator and goal of monastic life.
The love and work of others is embedded in the preparation and serving of food. Awareness of this breeds gratitude. Therefore, it is taken that way.
Man knows himself only through other people. It is a time of meeting other members of the community, mutual sharing of challenges, experiences and possibilities of life.
In silence we encounter ourselves and our spiritual reality. In it, thoughts become clear, emotions calm down, and we become more aware and alert.
It reminds us that we are travelers on earth and that it is not our permanent destination. It provides encouragement and refreshment on the spiritual path.
Each one is worthy of attention, eager for effort and fruitful with beneficial effects, if it is done with the right intention. That's how it turns into a prayer.
We thank God for the past day and ask forgiveness for all omissions. We are referring to all people, both the Christian community and civil society.
The culture of communal dining has been present in our communities since the beginning. Eating in the same place strengthens the community and its unity.
When the strength weakens and the activities subside, the community gathers and mutually shares the joys and sorrows, routine and surprises of the past day.
It calls for deep honesty towards oneself and God, and ends in silent surrender to the Other, both distant and close.
Events that bring togetherness
Our togetherness makes us whole. In the aspiration that God is glorified in everything, we live together in secrecy and composure, with an open heart towards the community.
The hardworking hands of the Benedictines
We preserve the monastic spirit and tradition of our ancestors according to the Rule of St. Benedict: "Only then are they true monks who live by the work of their hands."
Pray and work…that God may be glorified in everything!
Would you like to join our community?
"In, but not of, the world" are words that might be used to describe this monastic community and its orientation in life.