English Congregation

02 (f01) - Angl - monks sisters

foundation date1336
email address

The English Benedictine Congregation is the oldest of the twenty-one Benedictine congregations. There is a canonical continuity between the present day Congregation and the pre-Reformation English Congregation established in the thirteenth century by the Holy See.

  • From the tenth to the sixteenth centuries the English Benedictines played a key role in every aspect of English life: religious, social and economic. The Congregation narrowly survived King Henry VIII's dissolution of the monasteries in the 1530s but flourished in exile on the Continent. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries the English monks and nuns re-established monasteries in their homeland, and since then there have been further foundations in England, Wales, the United States, Peru and Zimbabwe. The Congregation currently comprises three abbeys of nuns and ten abbeys of monks.

  • The work of the Congregation varies from house to house. At the present moment EBC monks are engaged in education, retreat work and parish ministry in 16 dioceses in Britain. Underpinning the pastoral outreach is a tradition of contemplative and mystical prayer; this tradition, often associated with Fr Augustine Baker, chaplain to the nuns at Cambrai in the seventeenth century, is still strong today in the Congregation.

  • monasteries of the Congregation

    Ampleforth - Abbey 86 monks
    Belmont - Abbey 40 monks 120 lay oblates
    Buckfast - Abbey 27 monks 150 lay oblates
    Douai - Abbey 29 monks 50 lay oblates
    Downside - Abbey 31 monks
    Osmotherley Ampleforth - Priory 4 monks
    Monte Cassino - Zimbabwe Ampleforth - Priory 5 monks
    Brownedge Ampleforth - Priory 8 monks
    Pachacamac Belmont - House 8 monks
    Oxford - Saint Benet Ampleforth - House 10 monks
    Ealing - Abbey 18 monks
    Worth - Abbey 22 monks
    Washington - Abbey 19 monks 40 lay oblates
    Saint Louis - Abbey 24 monks 12 lay oblates
    Portsmouth - Abbey 15 monks
    Chester - Abbey 8 nuns 8 lay oblates
    Colwich - Abbey 8 nuns 10 lay oblates
    Stanbrook - Abbey 24 nuns 115 lay oblates