Military Monks

Published by Saint Vincent Archabbey Public Relations on

Wimmer Wednesday. During my absence in Minnesota, and while on visitation to the various priories, troops were levied and four of my lay brothers were drafted into the army though they had already made solemn profession. This forced me to hurry to Washington to see the President and from him to procure their release. My representations achieved the desired result. It was decided that monks of St. Benedict would be exempt from military service so that in the future we shall no longer be vexed in this respect. (Wimmer had managed to obtain only a brief exemption for his monks. The following year a stricter draft law resulted in the conscription of other monks. See his letter (page 266) of June 10, 1863, to Abraham Lincoln.)
—Boniface Wimmer, Letters of An American Abbot, December 2, 1862