The Archabbey of St. Ottilien is today one of the most interesting and impressive monastic complexes of the Catholic Church. It is situated in Bavaria, in the south of Germany between Munich and Augsburg. In winter, the dominant colour is white-the fruit of copious snowfalls. In summer, there is the green of its forests and fields which encircle the monastery. To the south, you are able to see the outline of the Alps.
At the heart of St. Ottilien is the abbey church, which was built at the beginning of the 20th century in neo-gothic style. It is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Around it, there is the cloister with the cells of the majority of the community members and other community rooms such as the refectory, library, administrative wing, visiting rooms, chapter house, etc.
On the outside, St. Ottilien appears to be a small village. Beside the monastery, you find the retreat house. Spiritual exercises are one of the principal works of the community. Thousands of people throughout the year stay in the retreat house to participate in spiritual programs. There is also a guest house for those who would like to spend a few days on retreat.
Behind the retreat house, one finds the boarding house (where about 25 young people live during the school week) and the Rabanus Maurus Institute, where around 700 young people study prior to their university studies. Beside the Institute, one finds the rail station, which allows for easy access to St. Ottilien.
In front of the Retreat House, one finds a huge monastic shop and exhibition hall. Beside it one finds the editing and printing house Eos which is dedicated to the publishing of primarily historic or spiritual texts. In the same area, one finds the Mission Procure, which is dedicated to raising and managing funds for the various works and projects undertaken by the Congregation.
Finally, another important part of St. Ottilien is its agricultural wing. Many hectares are cultivated by the monks and various employees. There are impressive cattle, pork and chicken operations.
It is a large community with numerous activities. Many of the monks are engaged in trades which maintain the running of the monastery such as bakers, butcher, tailor, laundry, cobbler, carpenter, mechanics, nursing, barber, blacksmith, postal services, administration, etc. Although it may seem somewhat odd, one of the activities which has a long tradition at the monastery is the fire-fighter brigade which is run by various younger monks. There is also a musical band for important liturgical celebrations, but also for less-formal occasions. At the head of the monastery, one finds Father Archabbot, Dom Wolfgang Öxler, elected by the community in the year 2012 as the former Archabbot, P. Jeremias Schröder, was elected as Abbot President of our Congregation.