Once again, Daylesford Abbey played host to a beautiful AbbeyFest. This annual celebration of faith and family featured musical artists from around the country. Headline Matt West was joined by Riley Clemmons, Array of Hope, Village Lights, and Gus deSimone.
Philadelphia’s Archbishop Nelson Perez was the principal celebrant at Mass.
Thousands of guests gathered at Daylesford Abbey in Paoli on a beautiful late-summer day. In addition to the incredible music and Mass, AbbeyFest included Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Confessions were held outside, under the trees.
One of the most impressive experiences during AbbeyFest was the Call for Vocations. Archbishop Perez invited men and women considering the priesthood and consecrated life to come to the altar and receive a special blessing. Dozens of young men and women stood up for a vocation to the priesthood and religious life. No doubt, these young people were inspired by the event, which also featured two members of the Norbertine Community who shared their vocation experiences.
Fr. Carl Braschoss shared his story as a “vagabond” who heard God’s call to a priestly vocation while on the road. Fr. Carl went to Villanova and began a successful and lucrative career in business. He shared with everyone at AbbeyFest that he felt unsatisfied with his life. So he sold his possessions, packed up his car and hit the road. In Texas, Fr. Carl encountered a youth ministry program at a local university. Through this experience, he heard God invite him to consider religious life. At that point, Fr. Carl followed a path to Daylesford Abbey and the Catholic priesthood.
Frater Jeff Himes, who was just ordained a Deacon at Daylesford Abbey, shared his story as well. Frater Jeff spent the early part of his adult life working in the music industry, promoting pop music, indie rock and various A-list artists while living in LA and NYC. But Frater Jeff wanted something more. He made the decision to leave the world of rock-n-roll and went down a path of discovery. Frater Jeff was not raised in a religious household, so it was as an adult that he came to know God and the Catholic Faith. Through mutual friends in the area, Frater Jeff discovered Daylesford Abbey and was drawn to the Norbertine life of common prayer and service to God’s people through healing and reconciliation.
Thousands of people from across the region trekked to Daylesford Abbey to enjoy AbbeyFest 2023. A feeling of communion, love and faith filled the grounds and surrounded everyone in attendance. This is truly an event to be experienced!
Daylesford Abbey, a Norbertine Community located in Chester County, PA, is a Catholic religious community of men who are dedicated to living in community, praying together and serving the church through ministries dedicated to promoting healing and reconciliation. You can learn more about the Norbertine vocation by clicking here.