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Saint-André-lez-Bruges, Abbey of


The Benedictine Sancti Andreae de Zevenkerken in St. Andries, west Flanders, Belgium; Diocese of Bruges. It was founded with monks from affligem c. 1100 by Robert II of Flanders to fulfill a vow made during the siege of Antioch in 1098. Made an abbey in 1188, it was sacked by Calvinists in the 16th century and suppressed by the French in 1796. In 1899 Gérard van Caloen of Matredsous, in charge of the restoration of Benedictines in Brazil, opened in St. Andries the procura that Leo XIII made an abbey in 1901 (inaugurated in 1902).

The abbey church (190727), which is composed of "seven churches" in one, modeled after S. Stefano, Bologna, was consecrated by Cardinal Ildefonse schuster in 1935. In 1919 the abbey withdrew from the Brazilian congregation to form a Belgian congregation with Maredsous and Mont-César (Louvain). The first abbot, Theodore Nève (191258; d. March 27, 1963), was succeeded by Theodore II Ghesquière. From Saint-André, a missionary abbey, has radiated the influence of the Church and monasticism. In 1910 it undertook to evangelize Haut-Katanga in the Congo. The priory of Si-shan (1927) in Sichuan, China, was moved to Chengdu in 1947; after being suppressed by the Communists in 1952, it reopened in Valyermo, Calif., in 1955. In 1950 Saint-André founded the first Benedictine monastery in India at Siluvaigiri (now in Asirvanam, Bangalore). In 1939 Polish monks from Saint-André restored the archabbey of Tyniec in Poland. The monks played a prominent role in the liturgical movement between World Wars I and II, producing, e.g., the Missals of Gaspar Lefebvre. The preparatory school (founded 1910) has 150 students. Besides the series Assemblées du Seigneur (since 1962), the monks publish the periodicals Paroisse et liturgie, Rythmes du Monde, and Art d'Église.

Bibliography: u. berliÈre, Monasticon belge (Bruges 1890) 3:86129. La Belgique monastique (Brussels 1958) 2933. v. fiala, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765) 9:130131.

[n. n. huyghebaert]

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