Missionary Benedictine Texts and Studies

The series was founded in 2008 for the research and documentation on the history of the Missionary Benedictines of St. Ottilien and Tutzing. It is directed by Joel Macul, O.S.B. (Newton/Schuyler) and Cyrill Schaefer, O.S.B. (St. Ottilien).

06

Dondorfer O.S.B. (ed.), Witgar

Our Destiny in Korea

German Benedictine Missionaries Tell Their Story 1941-1954

Our Destiny in Korea
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The return of 42 Missionary Benedictine monks and sisters to Germany who were missing for years in Communist North Korea became a media sensation in 1954. Their stories about the last years of the missionary Abbey of Tokwon, their dealings with Japanese, Russian and North Korean occupation forces and the time of imprisonment in the Communist labor camp of Oksadok provide a fascinating image of Christian courage in times of distress.

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05

Hertlein, Siegfried

Ndanda Abbey, Part IV

The Abbey’s Life with the African Diocese 1973 – 2001

Ndanda Abbey, Part IV
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In 1963, the Territorial Abbey of Ndanda handed over their former mission territory to the newly erected Mtwara diocese. The agreement between the missionary Benedictines and leadership of the diocese stated that “the missionary priests of the Congregation of St. Ottilien are prepared to co-operate with the African clergy in the ordinary and extraordinary pastoration under the authority of the Bishop. The Missionary brothers will also continue their services for the Diocese.” This forth volume of Ndanda’s widespread history describes the transition period which started under the Abbot Bishop Victor Haelg and continued under Abbot Siegfried Hertlein.

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04

Hertlein, Siegfried

Ndanda Abbey, Part III

From Mission to Local Church 1950 – 1972

Ndanda Abbey, Part III

The need for change after the Second World War culminated in the Second Vatican Council. Old pagan traditions were now to be understood as African Traditional Religion, liturgy was given a new shape, catechetical teaching had to be rethought. The local Church should be given into the hands of the local hierarchy as soon as possible, thus bringing the traditional ways of mission to an end. Within the Congregation of St. Ottilien, a genuine rethinking of life within the monastic communities took place. The juridical status of the lay bothers had to be redefined as did the task of missionaries all over the world. It was certainly a heavy burden Abbot-Bishop Victor Haelg had to shoulder until the new diocese of Mtwara was born under the leadership of the first African bishop, Maurus Libaba.

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03

Hertlein, Siegfried

Ndanda Abbey, Part II

The Church Takes Root in Difficult Times 1932 – 1952

Ndanda Abbey, Part II

In 1932 the missionary territory of Ndanda became an independant Abbacy Nullius. The new Abbot-Bishop Joachim Ammann had to face numerous difficulties: Islam was fighting for predominance, pagan traditions challenged the mission work and developments in Germany had a negative impact on the situation in Tanganyika. The outbreak of WW II brought with it the threat of permanent expulsion of German missionaries from the Territory. Yet the Church grew: new mission stations were established, the Ndanda hospital expanded, catechetical material was published by the mission press, a congregation of African Benedictine Sisters was born, the Ndanda Art School flourished and the first African priests are ordained. The Church in southeast Tanzania has taken root.

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02

Hertlein, Siegfried

Ndanda Abbey, Part I

Beginning and Development up to 1932

Ndanda Abbey, Part I

The cornerstone of Catholicism in southern Tanzania was laid by the Benedictine monks of Ndanda Abbey. This first volumn of the abbey’s history explains how the Missionary Benedictines came to establish the faith in southern Tanzania. Although threatened by wars and hindered time and again by human weaknesses, the small mission stations grew into widereaching territorial abbeys and centers of a lively Church in southern Tanzania. Their early struggles to establish the first Christian communities has blossomed into three dioceses: Mtwara, Lindi, and Tunduru-Masasi.  A bbot em. Siegfried Hertlein began his missionary carrier in Tanzania in 1962. From 1976 to 2001 he was the third abbot of the Missionary Benedictine Monastery of Ndanda. Since then he has been involved in monastic formation and research into the abbey’s history.

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