Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

Cistercian monastery and cradle of the modern Cistercians of the Immaculate Conception, situated on the rivulet Sénancole, Diocese of Avignon ; founded, with the concurrence of St. Bernard, by Alfant, Bishop of Cavaillon, and Raymond Bérenger II, Count of Provence.

The original community came from the Cistercian abbey of Mazan, in 1148, under Peter, their first abbot. In the beginning their poverty was extreme, until the Lords of Simiane became their benefactors, and built, with the assistance of the neighboring nobility, a spacious monastery according to the rule of Cîteaux. The attraction of, St. Bernard's name drew numerous postulants to the new foundation, so that in a short time the community numbered more than one hundred members, enabling them, in 1152, to found the monastery of Chambons, in the Diocese of Viviers . Little by little however, it suffered the fate of so many abbeys of those times, and weakened in fervour and numbers; after it had been governed by thirty regular abbots, It fell in commendam in 1509; having, at that time, not more than a dozen members. When suppressed by the Revolution, 1791, there was but one monk remaining of the whole community.

In 1854 Abbé Barnouin, of the Diocese of Avignon, bought the abbey, which was in a state of perfect preservation, and established a community there. The object of the founder was to institute a medium regime more severe than the common, but less strict than the Reform of La Trappe. After a short time in the Novitiate of Sta. Croce in Gerusalemme (Rome), having obtained approbation for his monastery, Abbé Barnouin was professed in 1857, taking the name of "Mary Bernard". A new decree, in 1867, erected the house into a particular congregation affiliated to the Cistercians of the Common Observance, under the title "Congregation of the Cistercians of the Immaculate Conception of N. D. de Sénanque", with a vicar general, elected for six years, at their head. Dom M. Bernard, the founder, first filled this office (1868). After establishing several other subordinate monasteries, he began the restoration of the celebrated Abbey of Lérins , and was authorized to make his residence there. His successors followed him in this, until compelled by the persecutions of 1902, to leave the country, transferring the community to N. D. du Suffrage, Province of Lérida, Spain, where they are now established.

More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Sister Cecilia Maria's smile stuns
  • A Prayer for the Departed HD Video
  • Fatima Morning Offering HD Video
  • St. Peter: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, June 29, 2016
  • America has become craven, that's why Satan is winning
  • Car accident reveals OBGYN's dark secret - Abortion drugs and human ...
  • Daily Readings for Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 12:1-11
1 It was about this time that King Herod started persecuting certain ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9
2 I will praise Yahweh from my heart; let the humble hear and ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 16:13-19
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi he put this ... Read More

Reading 2, Second Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18
6 As for me, my life is already being poured away as a libation, and the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for June 29th, 2016 Image

St. Peter
June 29: Peter, who was also known as Simon Peter of ... Read More