Crookston Diocese and Benedictine Sisters announce plan for purchase of Mount St. Benedict Campus

Jul. 30—The Diocese of Crookston and the Sisters of St. Benedict have announced that the diocese intends to purchase the Mount St. Benedict campus. The property will become a pastoral center and retreat facility for the diocese.


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The diocese has launched "The Perfect Fit Capital Campaign" to raise $15 million — $12 million for the purchase of Mount St. Benedict and $3 million for an endowment for the property's maintenance.

Proceeds from the sale of the monastery will be allocated to the retirement of Benedictine Sisters, who, as a group historically, have provided more than 100 years of service to the diocese.

The arrangement provides for a private section of the current monastery for the sisters to live out their monastic lives, according to a news release from the diocese.

"As religious communities across the United States have become smaller, they have been searching for ways to regroup in smaller residences while putting their larger buildings to alternate good uses," said Sister Jane Becker, Mount St. Benedict administrator.

"Some religious communities are being left with empty, unusable structures," she said. "We are among the fortunate communities whose buildings are relatively new, still in excellent shape, and there is someone standing by, ready to use the building for a worthy, ministry-related purpose."

Ministries in the Diocese of Crookston will continue in a modern, accessible location that offers training rooms, offices, retreat facilities and private grounds within walking distance from the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.

"The timing of this project is providential for the Diocese of Crookston, as well as the Benedictine Sisters," said the Most Reverend Richard Pates, apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Crookston. "It will offer tremendous support to diocesan ministries. It is simply the perfect fit for all parties concerned."

To date, $6.67 million in funds have been pledged so the Diocese of Crookston and Sisters of St. Benedict can carry on their shared mission to grow and sustain the call to missionary discipleship in northwest Minnesota, according to the diocesan announcement.