Photo courtesy of Saint Anselm Abbey

On 17 June 2024, Brother Isaac Murphy OSB, was elected and confirmed as the sixth abbot of Saint Anselm Abbey, marking a historic milestone as the first non-ordained abbot in the United States and the first in the world since the 2022 rescript on religious governance by the Holy See. Following his election, Abbot Isaac made the Profession of Faith and Oath of Fidelity, officially becoming the abbot of Saint Anselm Abbey, chancellor of Saint Anselm College, and chair of the members of the Saint Anselm College Corporation. The election was presided over by Abbot President Jonathan Licari OSB, and required special permission from the Holy See due to Brother Isaac’s non-ordination status.

Brother Isaac Murphy was born in Montreal, Quebec, in 1963 and has been a monk at Saint Anselm Abbey since 1993, making his solemn vows in 1996. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Saint Francis Xavier University, a Master’s degree, and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. Brother Isaac has served in various academic and administrative roles at Saint Anselm College, including lecturer, prior of Saint Anselm Abbey, vice president for Academic Affairs, and most recently, executive vice president. His extensive experience in both the monastic community and the academic institution highlights his commitment to education and monastic life.

The editors of OSB DOT ORG extend their heartfelt congratulations to Abbot Isaac on his historic election. His dedication to the Benedictine monastic tradition and his extensive academic and administrative experience promise to bring vitality and leadership to Saint Anselm Abbey and College. May God bless your future endeavours. Our prayers are with you and the community of Saint Anselm.