Sister Petra Clare, Hermit and Iconographer in Scotland

When Archbishop Mario Conti was Bishop of Aberdeen, he gave permission for the skete way of life to be developed at the vacant presbytery at Our Lady and St. Bean parish Church at Marydale in Cannich which became Sancti Angeli Benedictine Skete.
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Marydale now consists of the parish church, the 3 cell skete and its walled garden, and a church hall, with priest’s flat. This is set in fifteen acres of church croft land, including a small pinewood. This ensures regular recourse to the sacraments of the Church, and proximity to a bus service, health care, and a village shop / post office for practical needs.
Sister Petra Clare was granted a papal indult to make canonical Benedictine foundation for the hermit life at St. Cecilia’s Abbey, Ryde. Over 15 years her vocation to live a life of prayer in solitude was fostered, as she deepened her understanding of the Benedictine Rule and vows at the heart of the hermit path.

The daily monastic practise combines Benedictine and Carthusian characteristics, inspired by the Valliscaulian monastic tradition, which was popular in Scotland in the middle ages. Services together are the Matins Vigil, Lauds, combined with communion from the reserve sacrament, and Vespers. Mass is available twice a week in the parish church.

To maintain an atmosphere of continuous silence, the little hours are offered in cell and meals are also taken in cell. On Saturday, some common work and studies are undertaken, while on Sunday there is a walk after a communal meal.
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