The Poor Clares of Memphis, Tennessee
When we were founded in 1932 we were surroundedby farmland and fronted by a dirt road. We weren’t even part of the city of Memphis then, but in an outlying area called Frayser. Over the years a blue-collar neighborhood grew up around us and eventually our area became large enough to be incorporated into the city of Memphis. In the midst of this social change the Monastery stands as a symbol of God’s perennial presence. The Church is here. And the Church is, as always, at prayer. We know that Christ is praying with us, in us and through us, because he said, “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
Monasteries are a proclamation of differentness. We do not follow the ways of the world or conform to its culture. In this time of the “new evangelization” the monastery evangelizes, in the words of Pope Paul VI, by “raising irresistible questions” in the minds of those who cannot understand how we can “do nothing all day but pray.” We do more than that, of course, but all is designed to facilitate constant prayer. The “nothing butness” of that is our witness to the world. In an age of temporary things, we focus our lives on a loving and eternal God and follow the contemplative vowed lifestyle founded by St. Clare of Assisi over 800 years ago—not as an historic drama, but as a fulfilling life in the 21st century.
To learn more about our monastery, visit our website at poorclare.org/memphis.
Monastery of St. Clare
1310 Dellwood Ave
Memphis, TN 38127