Orval

Location

Official Name Abbaye N.-D. d'Orval

50

Country Belgium

City Villers-devant-Orval

Postcode B-6823

Contact Information

Telephone [32] (61) 31 10 60

Community Email webmaster@orval.be

Guesthouse Email hotellerie@orval.be

Business Email fromagerie@orval.be

Website www.orval.be

Superior Dom Lode Van Hecke, Abbé 2007

Other Informations

Juridical Status Abbey

Diocese Dioecesis Namurcensis (Namur)

OCSO Region CNE

Founded/Restored 1927

Origins

Originally founded in 1070; Cistercian in 1132; destroyed in 1793; re-established by Fr. Albert Van der Cruysse, monk of La Trappe, with monks of Sept-Fons who had returned from Maristella, Brazil; annex house of Sept-Fons until 1935; thereafter autonomous abbey.

History

1070: Ancient monastery founded in 1070, distinguished by the generosity of the Countess Mathilde, populated in 1132 by Cistercians from Trois Fontaine.

1674: Having had the renowned Bernard de Montgaillard as abbot, the community adopts the reforms of de Rancé.

1793: Destroyed by French Revolutionaries.

1926: The ruined monastery is offered to the Order in the person of Fr. Albert Van der Cruyssen, monk of La Trappe.  Since La Trappe was unable to assure the restoration of monastic life there, Dom Chautard decided to transfer the refuge of Maristella there.

1927, 11 March: the first monks from Sept-Fons move into temporary dwellings while the ruins are being arranged and the new monastery built.

1929, 19 August: The cornerstone of the new church is laid.

1935: the General Chapter authorizes its erection as an abbey, which is granted by the Holy See on 13 December 1935.

1936, 29 February: election of the 53rd abbot of Orval, the first since the community’s restoration.

1939, 5 June: Blessing of the church, which is raised to the rank of minor basilica.

1948: Its construction finally completed  in 1947, the church, raised to the rank of basilica, is consecrated by His Emm. Cardinal Micara.

Father Immediate

Sept-Fons until 1946; thereafter Westmalle

Daughter Houses

Clairefontaine, Brialmont

Past Superiors

Jean-Baptiste CHAUTARD — Abbot — ?/ ?/1926 – 29/09/1935
Albert van der CRUYSSEN — Abbot — 29/02/1936 – 24/11/1950
Etienne GILLARD — Apostolic Administrator — 04/09/1949 – 19/12/1950
Vincent de Paul SONTHONNAX — Abbot — 19/12/1950 – 21/11/1966
Raphaël BOULET — Abbot — 12/12/1966 – 24/10/1967
François-Xavier HANIN — Abbot — 14/11/1967 – 05/10/1971
Etienne GILLARD — Sup.ad nutum — ?/10/1971 – 25/02/1974
Etienne GILLARD — Abbot — 25/02/1974 – 10/11/1980
Denis DEBUSSCHERE — Abbot — 26/11/1980 – 09/10/1981
Jacques BERNIER — Sup.ad nutum — 16/02/1982 – 17/11/1984
Paul BARBE — Sup.ad nutum — 17/11/1984 – 11/03/1988
Eric DION — Abbot — 12/03/1988 – 19/08/1999
Matthieu CAUWE — Sup. ad nutum — 19/08/1999 — 13/03/2001
Matthieu CAUWE Abbot — 13/03/2001 — 22/09/2003
Jean KREMER — Sup. ad nutum — 30/09/2003 – 25/01/2007

Work and Sources of Income

Cheese, bread, beer, souvenirs.

Guest Facilities

60 rooms

Transportation

Gares belges : Florenville, 10 km., Marbehan, 20 km. Gares françaises : Carignan ou Montmédy, les 2 à 20 km

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