Author Archives: Bro. David O.S.B.

About Bro. David O.S.B.

Br. David is a monk of Conception Abbey and webmaster for The Printery House.

Open for Business to Help You Cope with COVID-19

Updated May 11, 2020

Our regular employees are back at work, eager to fill your orders quickly. Our customer service hours are now 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM Central Time.

With the return of our employees, we are now once again able to entertain requests for custom work.

Note about expedited shipping: The increased rates for expedited shipping are still in effect. Due to additional surcharges being added by FedEx for expedited services, we are raising our rates for expedited shipping options by $1.00. For 2-Day shipping, add an additional $18.00 (instead of $17.00) to the base rate. For Next Day shipping, add an additional $29.00 (instead of $28.00) to the base rate. Also please note that FedEx is not guaranteeing delivery times on any services, and we therefore are not able to guarantee those services.

March 20, 2019

During this time of unprecedented uncertainty, while we remain open for business, all of us at The Printery House at Conception are concerned about the safety and well-being of our customers, families, and friends.

Our hearts are with those of you who have been personally affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as well the communities and businesses around the world that are taking extreme measures to slow the spread of this virus.

Do Not Fear Framed Print

The Printery House at Conception is currently operating on our regular hours and committed to continuing our ministry and service to you while also ensuring the health and safety of all of our employees. For over 60 years, we have proudly served you by sharing the Christian faith through the creation and distribution of Christian greeting cards, Christmas cards, Catholic prayer cards, and other contemporary religious are and Catholic gifts. We remain committed to our mission of bringing the Gospel to every person and every situation, especially the difficult ones. We are taking extra precautions to ensure the health and safety of our employees, their work, and your orders. At this time, the virus has not yet reached our rural area, but we are making preparations in the event we have to send employees home for their safety. If that occurs, we hope that our monks, who live here on campus, will be able to keep our business open and maintain at least a portion of our day to day operations and continue serving you. We realize that being able to send a card to a loved one may be one of the only forms of personal communication left during this time of isolation. For this reason, we are doing all we can to ensure our continued service to you during this difficult time.

For more details about the precautions, the entire campus of Conception is taking visit, www.conceptionabbey.org/information-regarding-coronavirus-covid-19.

Be assured of our continued prayers for all of you and those ill and affected by these recent events.

If you have any questions, please contact us at 1-800-322-2737 or sales@printeryhouse.org. As any updates become available, they will be posted here.

The Printery House at Conception: Living the Benedictine Tradition

Personalize Christmas Cards in a Matching Color

Have you ever wanted to personalize Christmas Cards with your own text and have it match the color of the text that is already there? Now you can! 

On cards enabled for Online Designing which have a colored inside text, we now provide a color palette so that you can select the exact color of the inside text.

In the Online Designer for the selected card, under Font Color, click the “Choose” button:

Use the Choose button under Font color to open the Color Palettes.

In the box that pops up, you will see a color palette with one or more Inside Text colors:

The Color Palette Tab allows you personalized your card with the exact matching text color.
Click the color box to choose the color.

If you prefer, you can still select the CMYK tab to choose any color you want for your personalization. (Note that this does not change the color of the text that is part of the card design.)

Choose any color text to personalize Christmas cards.
Click in the color box, slide the spectrum slider, or enter CMYK numbers to specify an exact color.

If you decide you’d rather go back to black, click the revert button:

This button will revert the color to black.

Using our online designer to personalize Christmas cards is a great way to save time. It adds a personal touch, but you don’t have to write it by hand. It also may be easier to read than your handwriting. Even if you have beautiful handwriting, it is easy to make a mistake when you are writing personal messages on several cards. Let us add your personal message for you. You can still sign the cards and add individual notes before you send them.

Remember, starting this year all of our personalized cards and notes are ordered by the piece. Order exactly the number of cards you need (or maybe a few extra). You no longer have to order in multiples of the package quantity. Minimum orders apply.

Click here to learn more about personalizing cards.

Happy designing!

Madonna and Child Portrayed in Art

The Madonna and Child has been a popular subject of art since the Renaissance. The portrayals of Mary with her infant Son were objects of devotion. To learn more, see this article on Madonna and Child artwork from the National Gallery of Art:

In Depth: Madonna and Child

Not surprisingly, every year depictions of the Madonna and Child are among the most popular of our Christmas cards.

Madonna and Child Christmas Card
Madonna and Child of the Trees by Irina Lombardo

However, we also get one or two notes or calls each year from people who are offended by the depiction of the infant Jesus in the nude. If this style of art shocks or offends you, please choose from one of our other designs. But know that this way of depicting our Lord has a long history, and is not meant in any way to offend. It comes from a less sexualized culture which viewed children as innocent and pure. In particular, the portrayal of Christ nude emphasizes his true humanity.

Furthermore, the addition of a halo or nimbus around Christ’s head (not present in all depictions) indicates his divinity. Often, when Christ appears in art with other saints, his nimbus incorporates a cross while the others do not. This distinguishes divinity from human sanctity.

Many depictions of Mary and Jesus focus on their humility and humanity. This kind of imagery makes them more accessible. Take this American piece, for example:

Christmas Card with a tender portrayal of the Holy Family

Religious Christmas art makes people feel connected with God. They can relate to images of a mother and child. Some prefer more traditional images that emphasize the sacred. Others prefer more human, “homey” images. Some like paintings, while others like mosaics. Some like icons or stained glass-style images. Whatever your taste in art, The Printery House has a religious Christmas card for you!

Monastic Formation: Making a Monk

This article describes in brief the process of monastic formation that a man goes through to become a monk. This is how it happens at Conception Abbey. Other monasteries may have different procedures or terminology.

First Steps

Those just visiting the community may be termed “prospects” or “candidates.” Either term may be used interchangeably. Vocation guests may be allowed to eat with the monks or to sit with us in our choir stalls at prayer. They may also get opportunities to work with one or more of the monks.

After a period of discernment and communication with the vocation director, a man may decide to ask to test his vocation within the community. After completing an application process and being accepted by the vocations committee, he may come to live with us. At this point we call him a postulant. He has “postulated” himself as a potential member of the community.

Becoming a Novice

If the postulant and the community discern that it is God’s will, he may next proceed to a more formal period of monastic formation or training as a “novice.” According to church law, the “novitiate” or period of being a novice must last at least one year. So if you enter novitiate in August, you could, God willing, profess vows a year and a day later, the following August.

Simple Vows

A new monk first professes vows that will last for three years. During this time, he is a “junior” monk. He receives a new name at profession and is called “Brother.”

Supporting Those in Monastic Formation

Young men in the process of discernment and monastic formation need lots of prayers. Please pray for our novices. Pray, too, that God will send us more good men to seek God in the monastic life. If you know someone making vows, send a card.