The Norbertines

Abbot Dominic Rossi: A Journey of Faith and Service


The beautiful countryside Chester County, PA is home to Daylesford Abbey, a Norbertine Community of men dedicated to healing and reconciliation, Abbot Dominic Rossi stands as a beacon of faith and dedication. Recently celebrating his Golden Jubilee, marking 50 years since his ordination as a Catholic priest in the Norbertine order, Abbot Dominic's life is a testament to the transformative power of vocation and service. The Path to Priesthood Abbot Dominic's journey into priesthood was marked by moments of doubt and profound spiritual awakening. Like many of his confreres, Abbot Dominic grew up in the close-knit community of South Philadelphia.  His [...]

Abbot Dominic Rossi: A Journey of Faith and Service2024-07-08T13:30:14-04:00

Celebrating Father John Joseph Novielli, O. Praem.: A Lifetime of Service and Dedication


In the beautiful grounds of Daylesford Abbey and amidst the bustling halls of Villa Maria Academy, Father John Joseph Novielli, O. Praem., stands as a pillar of faith and service. With a remarkable journey spanning over five decades, Father John's life has been intricately woven with the Norbertine community, leaving an indelible mark on all who have crossed his path. Early Beginnings and Vocation Father John Joseph Novielli hails from South Philadelphia where he encountered the Norbertines at St. John Neumann High School.  His journey to the priesthood began in the 1960s when he joined the Norbertine community at Daylesford Abbey [...]

Celebrating Father John Joseph Novielli, O. Praem.: A Lifetime of Service and Dedication2024-07-08T13:22:22-04:00

How to Become a Priest


Discerning a  Catholic vocation to the priesthood begins with understanding the process of how to become a priest.  In general, a priest is a religious leader or figure typically associated with a particular faith or religious tradition. The role and responsibilities of priests can vary widely depending on the specific religious context. Here are some common types of priests found in different religious traditions. In the Catholic Faith there are several types of priests.  A diocesan priest is ordained to serve the faithful in a particular diocese.  An ordered priest is a member of a religious community and will serve [...]

How to Become a Priest2024-02-04T19:34:28-05:00

Ordination to the Deaconate of Frater Jeffrey Himes, O. Praem


On June 6, the feast of St. Norbert, Frater Jeffrey Himes, O. Praem a member of the Norbertines community at Daylesford Abbey in Paoli, PA was ordained to the Diaconate by Most Reverend Timothy C. Senior, who is the Auxiliary to the Archbishop of Philadelphia and Bishop-Elect of the Diocese of Harrisburg. There were also several main concelebrant presiders including Rt Rev Dominic A. Rossi, O. Praem who is the Abbot of Daylesford Abbey and Very Reverend John C. Zagarella, O. Praem who is the Prior of the Daylesford Abbey. The Ordination featured Daylesford’s ministers from the entire Daylesford Abbey [...]

Ordination to the Deaconate of Frater Jeffrey Himes, O. Praem2023-07-03T10:18:01-04:00

Called and Sent by Jesus


We are now in Eastertime, also known as the Easter season which focuses on the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Eastertide ends on the fiftieth day after Easter, on the day of Pentecost, celebrated this year on June 5th, 2022. On this day we recall when the Holy Spirit descended on the apostles in the form of tongues of fire. The Gospel readings have been focusing on Jesus's last words with his disciples. In the Gospel reading of John 20;19-31, for the Second Sunday of Easter, after first wishing his followers peace, Jesus said "As the Father has [...]

Called and Sent by Jesus2023-02-28T20:33:27-05:00

Father John Novielli: God Writes Straight With Crooked Lines


God writes straight with crooked lines. The plan God has for us is perfect, even though we can seldom see what He is asking of us.  Father John Novielli’s path to the Norbertine Order at Daylesford Abbey took unexpected turns and he encountered some obstacles toward fulfilling his vocation to the Catholic priesthood.  But looking back over his life, it is clear how God was with him along the journey. Born to Italian immigrants, Father John was raised in South Philadelphia with his three brothers. Father grew up during an amazing moment in time for both the Catholic church and [...]

Father John Novielli: God Writes Straight With Crooked Lines2023-02-21T21:59:56-05:00

Father Joseph Serano: A Vocation to Community


Growing up in a tight-knit Italian family in South Philadelphia, Father Joseph Serano had always been aware of the importance of family and community. This was a key factor in leading him to the Norbertine Order to fulfill his vocation to the priesthood, living the Rule of St. Augustine: “We seek to be of one mind and one heart on the way to God.” In 7th grade, Father Joseph’s family moved from St. Thomas Aquinas Parish to St. Monica Parish. It was at this time that Father Serano began to discover his calling to the Catholic priesthood. Like many men at [...]

Father Joseph Serano: A Vocation to Community2021-05-17T11:28:18-04:00

Daylesford Abbey’s White House Connection


On Wednesday, January 20, Joe Biden was inaugurated as 46th President of the United States. His running mate, Vice President Kamala Harris is not only the first woman, but first biracial woman to hold the position. President Biden is also the second Catholic to hold office, the first being John F. Kennedy.  Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. was born November 20, 1942 in Scranton, PA. At the age of 10, his family moved to Claymont, DE, living there a few years before settling in Wilmington, DE. He attended Archmere Academy in Claymont for high school, a private, Catholic college-preparatory high school [...]

Daylesford Abbey’s White House Connection2024-04-09T16:25:34-04:00

Feast of Saint Augustine


August 28- The Feast of Saint Augustine Today we celebrate the solemnity of Out Holy Father St Augustine of Hippo (354 - 430), Bishop and Doctor.- Whose rule we follow. He was born in Thagaste in Africa of a Berber family. He was brought up a Christian but left the Church and embraced the Manichaean heresy, later seeing how nonsensical it was and becoming a Neoplatonist instead. He led a wild and dissolute youth. He took a concubine by whom he had a son, Adeodatus. He had a brilliant legal and academic career. At length, through the prayers of his mother, [...]

Feast of Saint Augustine2020-08-28T09:46:04-04:00

Father John Zagarella visits St. Norbert School


Father John Zagarella traveled to Bangalore, India this past November to visit St. Norbert School, a Norbertine-run school. Father John was warmly welcomed by Father Alois, Father Jijo, Father Mariadas and Father Manoj from the school and parish during his time spent at St. Norbert. While he spent the majority of his two week trip at the school, these Norbertine priests took him to many Norbertine establishments in Southern India.  Father John noted the student’s exhibited politeness and class, greeting him each morning as they lined up before school for their morning prayer and the pledge to their country. Any student [...]

Father John Zagarella visits St. Norbert School2020-02-20T09:50:54-05:00
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