Transfiguration Monastery

From: "The Monastic Spiritual Journey" by Sister Donald Corcoran in Word and Spirit.

"The early Desert elders were called pneumatikos or pneumataphore—spirit-filled or spirit bearer. Odo Casel portrays St. Benedict as a consummate example of the spirit-filled elder. The call to monastic holiness today is precisely to become pneumatikos—spirit-filled. Russian Orthodox layman Olivier Clement, in a challenging presentation of monastic spiritual theology, argues that monasticism today is "called to receive fully its charismatic, or to put it more fundamentally and humbly, its pneumatic vitality." If Esther de Waal is right, that the heart of the Rule or Benedict is the Paschal Mystery, then we would do well to focus on the fullness of the Paschal Mystery. One does not become a pneumataphore (a spirit-bearer) unless one is first a stavraphore (a cross-bearer). One short phrase of the Apophthegmata Patrum came to summarize, especially in the later Eastern Christian tradition, the whole significance of the spiritual quest of the monks: "Give your blood and receive the Spirit."