New Prior Announced At Downside

The Monastic Community at Downside has successfully petitioned the Holy See for the the continuation of the current administrative arrangements at Downside Abbey for a further two years which means that a Prior Administrator leads the Community as opposed to an Abbot.

The Community is relatively low in numbers and the English Benedictine Congregation now wishes to strengthen Downside so that it can transition to new structures for the monastery, its heritage and the school.  These new structures will enable each element of Downside to develop the leadership and resources needed for each to flourish as we move towards the setting up of the new School Trust, which has now been agreed in principle.

The present administration under Dom Leo Maidlow Davis will continue until September 2018 when Father Nicholas Wetz, Prior at Belmont Abbey, will move to Downside and take up the post of Prior Administrator. Father Leo will remain at Downside and continue to have a role. Dom Oliver Holt from Douai Abbey will become resident at Downside  and Dom Mark Barrett from Worth Abbey will be a regular visitor; both are already Trustees and members of the Prior’s Council. Together they will help to reinvigorate our Community and strengthen Downside.

Fr Leo said: “The Downside community looks forward to the arrival of Fr Nicholas Wetz and we will be giving him our full support as he leads us through the next steps in the revitalisation of our mission.”