Our Holy Father Norbert
Norbertines of St Philip’s Priory, Chelmsford
"Live together in harmony, and be of one mind and one heart on the way to God" (Rule 1.2)
The Canons Regular of Prémontré were founded by St. Norbert at Prémontré, France on Christmas Day, 1120.
By God's grace, we live the canonical life based upon the ancient Rule of St Augustine (written around 400). At the heart of our way of life is a devotion to prayer and contemplation, which nourishes our various apostolic works in the world. There are five pillars to our Norbertine way of life that our holy father Norbert bequeathed to us:
- The praise of Almighty God in the sacred liturgy
- A zeal for souls
- A life of penance
- Devotion to the Blessed Sacrament
- Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, especially her Immaculate Conception
The Order arrived in England in 1138, until the suppression of the monasteries in the Reformation. By then, there were 38 houses (both male and female) in the British Isles. Expelled from these islands for over three centuries, we returned in 1872 and founded several missions.
Our own canonry became independent in 2004, and we established our home in Chelmsford in 2006.
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Prayer for vocations to our Order
Almighty Father, raise up abundant and holy vocations to the Order of Prémontré.
Send us good and holy souls who will keep the Faith alive and guard the blessed memory of Our Holy Fathers Augustine and Norbert.
Send us ardent yet gentle men who through the preaching of Christ’s word and the administration of the Sacraments may continually renew your faithful.
Grant us holy ministers of your altar who will be careful and fervent guardians of the Eucharist; lifting high the Blessed Sacrament above all the errors and miseries of the world. Amen.
Category Archives: Former Houses
A certain noblewoman by the name of Ermesindis, the Countess of Namur, hearing that Norbert was passing through, quickly hastened to meet him and eagerly requested that he accept a church in the village of Floreffe and there install members of … Continue reading
On Saturday Br. Rupert gave a talk to the Essex Recusant Society on the history of our Order in Essex; in Great Parndon, Beeleigh and Chelmsford. Br. Rupert spoke of our recent visit to Beeleigh Abbey and of the many pre-Reformation connections between … Continue reading
On 18th September we were delighted to visit the former Premonstratensian abbey of Beeleigh at the invitation of the present owners, Mr and Mrs Foyle. Beeleigh was established in 1180 and was suppressed during the Dissolution, it is the closest … Continue reading
2nd September: Ausculpus – of the abbey of Valsecret. Having studied at the university of Cologne, where he took doctorates in theology and canon law, he was called to Prémontré to fulfil the role of prior. Later, because of his … Continue reading
The earliest record of Premonstratensians in Essex is a note in the chronicle of Ralph, abbot of Coggeshall that in the year 1180 ‘the canons of Great Parndon, near Harlow moved to Maldon’ . Certainly the Premonstratensians had established a … Continue reading
As we mark the feast of St. Dominic, founder of the Order of Preachers, we also recall a venerable tradition that holds that St. Dominic was a member of the Premonstratensian Order, specifically that he was a sub-deacon at the … Continue reading