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Liturgical Press

Northern Light

The Cistercian Nuns of Tautra Mariakloster, Preface by Dom Brendan Freeman, OCSO

Northern Light
Northern Light

ISBN: 9780879071608, MW060P

Details: 232 pgs, 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 x 1/2
Publication Date: 09/15/2020
Cistercian Publications
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2021 Catholic Media Association Award third place award in anthology

For at least eight centuries, the Norwegian island of Tautra in the Trondheim fjord has been known for its spiritual waves and special light. In the Middle Ages, Cistercian monks established the northernmost monastery of the Order, living God-centered lives and developing skills such as land use and animal husbandry until the Reformation.

In 1999, Cistercian nuns reestablished Tautra Mariakloster, the monastery of Our Lady of the Safe Island. Visitors to the modern monastery, distinguished by its glass-roofed church, quickly sense the silence, peace, and light of the place.

Four of the women who live at Tautra have contributed to this volume of monastic wisdom from the north. They write of their experiences as monastics living close to the land, sky, and water on this island, following the liturgical year of the monastery with its enduring rhythm while experiencing the changing seasons and landscape that help to shape their life of faith and light.

Includes color photos.

The nuns of Tautra Mariakloster are a group of women from eight countries who have been called to monastic life at Tautra, in central Norway.

ISBN: 9780879071608, MW060P

Details: 232 pgs, 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 x 1/2
Publication Date: 09/15/2020
Cistercian Publications


“This book is a valuable yearlong calendar of the life of the fourteen Cistercian nuns of the Mariakloster on Tautra Island in the Trondheim Fjord of Norway. Their extraordinary relationship to the natural world around them is compellingly described by four of them who are gifted writers and poets. Looking at nature broadly through the lens of their religious practice, they also examine their faith and commitment intimately through the lens of nature. The experiences of seasonal and temporal variations of darkness and light in the fjord are especially important to the deepening of their faith practice and their ever-growing connection to the spiritual world.”
Robert Benson, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio

"Northern Light possesses a quiet capacity to prompt us to reflect seriously upon the quality of our own lives."
Catholic Books Review

“Through pictures, prayers, poetry and prose, four of the 14 members of the monastic community of Our Lady of the Safe Island in central Norway offer a glimpse into their daily life, so influenced by light and darkness.”
Catholic Media Association

"There is historical and theological depth here, all contained in a narrative of each one's real life experience of her call to religious life and to this unique monastic environment."

"This publication has pearls of wisdom throughout. A joyful and lively spirit emerges from the pages of this book and reveals how one monastic community lives a life of ora et labora."
The American Benedictine Review

“While the celestial phenomenon of aurora borealis, known in Norwegian as ‘nordlys’ or ‘northern lights,’ sparks a thrill of hope in the sisters of Tautra whenever they appear in the winter skies, these women who strive to live out an authentic search for God as a monastic community have in turn become themselves northern lights that beckon the reader to ponder and contemplate the ways in which God speaks through the books of Scripture, nature, and experience.”
Cistercian Studies Quarterly

"Northern Light will interest any reader whose concerns or curiosity extend to the psychology of monasticism or contemporary spirituality. With its handsome color photographs and rich descriptions of the daily lives of the sisters through the course of a year, Northern Light possesses a quiet capacity to prompt us to reflect seriously upon the quality of our lives."
Midwest Book Review