Letter Two of Fr. Clement Sederholm to His Father

I heartily thank you for the description of your visit to our monastery in 1838. I read it with great interest and gave it to others to read. Your conclusion, however, is not in agreement not only with your favorable description of our brotherhood, as it was 25 years ago, but also contradicts the amicable impressions of your heart. You suggest that the monks forget the end for the means; for example, that they should have built a school in the monastery for children so that their life and works were not egotistical. But is it not enough that the monastery itself is a school for 300 brothers, who are spiritually educated and brought up? And your good opinions of our monks more than anything speak of the fruits of that moral education. I also offer the following example. Is it not enough that students study in university? Would it be appropriate to demand of them that they at the same time also were instructors in public schools? In St. Petersburg, Italy, and other places this was already tried but it ended up that no time was left for the students to even study.

Concerning assistance for the common good of people, the monastery is not unavailing, only adults and not children are taught. You yourself saw what a large confluence of people of all classes are present here, and the one who comes with faith without fail receives benefit.


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