Tongerloo, Abbey of

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Premonstratensian abbey near Westerloo in the Diocese of Antwerp, Belgium; founded c. 1130 by Giselbert of Kasterlee as a daughterhouse of St. Michael's in Antwerp. One of the most famous abbeys of the Netherlands, known for pastoral care and agricultural improvements, it came to minister 59 churches. Its abbot was the first in the Netherlands to receive the miter (late 14th century). It escaped the commendatory system with difficulty in the 15th century but was incorporated into the new Diocese of's Hertogenbosch (156990). In 1626 it founded a Premonstratensian college in Rome that lasted until 1812. The bollandists published volume seven of the Acta Sanctorum (1793) at Tongerloo. When suppressed in 1796 the abbey had 125 canons. The Gothic church and most of the cloister, but not the abbot's residence and the gatehouse, were then demolished. Tongerloo was revived (183540) and became an abbey (1868), regaining its former prominence. In 1872 it founded stations in Manchester, Crowle, and Spalding (England) and in 1896 a mission in Buta, Congo. It founded the priory of Kilnacrott, Ireland (1924), restored the Abbey of Leffe (1931), and took over the priory of Storrington, England (1940). Tongerloo was rebuilt after a fire in 1928.

Bibliography: h. lamy, L'Abbaye de Tongerloo depuis sa fondation jusqu'en 1263 (Louvain 1914); "L'Oeuvre des bollandistes à l'abbaye de Tongerloo," Analecta Praemonstratensia 2 (1926) 294306, 379389; 3 (1927) 6179, 156178, 284312. c.l. hugo, S. Ordinis Praemonstratensis annales, 2 v. (Nancy 173436) v.2. n. backmund, Monasticon Praemonstratense, 3 v. (Straubing 194956).

[n. backmund]