Saint Benedict’s Monastery maintains a physical and digital archive for use by scholars, genealogists and the general public to learn more about the lives of Benedictine women in the 19th century to the present day. Inquiries should be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The archive staff uploads videos to our YouTube channel. This is an ongoing project, so keep checking back to learn more about the community’s history. You can also view digitized films that have been submitted to Minnesota Digital Library (Minnesota Reflections).
The Archives is located on the lowest level of the 1983 addition to Sacred Heart Chapel. A receptionist in the Gathering Place directs visitors to the Archives.
The Archives houses documents, photographs, sound and video recordings and motion picture film. The ongoing oral history program has, at present, approximately 600 transcriptions of audio tapes of interviews with sisters and lay associates.
The materials are descriptive of religious life and ministries of the sisters of Saint Benedict’s Monastery from the 19th century until the present. Although the sisters have had a presence in more than 100 places, those for which there are a significant number of records include the following:
From the Chronicles
From the Chronicles: December 4, 1978
“Sister Elvan Drayna received a letter from Pope John Paul II in Polish! He bestowed his Apostolic Blessing and requested prayer for the universal Church, and for his service of all Christendom.”
In the 1950s at Our Lady of Lourdes in Little Falls, Minn., Sister Elvan (1914 – 2011) sketched a picture of the Blessed Virgin on a large framed canvas and her students sewed on hundreds of buttons, each signifying a school task successfully completed.