A note from the “Soap Sisters”. Classy!

I had a wonderful surprise from The Dominican Nuns of the Monastery of Our Lady of the Rosary in Summit, NJ.  They are the “Soap Sisters” who produce Seignadou Soap to help keep life and limb together.

They sent me a nice note thanking me for making their Gentleman’s Shaving Soap Gift Set a best seller.


On another card, included with the rest, there was a note about their vocation as contemplative nuns which speaks to an issue that I brought up in my post “Save The Liturgy – Save The World“. The sisters wrote:

The contemplative nun is rather like Moses on the hill top, arms raised in prayer while the battle rages below. She may be in one sense, as he was, above the struggle on the plains, but it is her prayer, as it was his, that turns the tide of the battle.

Do I hear an “Amen!”?

This is surely true.  I hope they will pray for me.

I saw in their group photo for Christmas that they have novices.  No surprise there.  Sisters such as these will ever have vocations: they have tapped a deep vein.

They make their living from selling soaps, etc.  Please give them some support.

Then have some Mystic Monk Coffee.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. capchoirgirl says:

    Great soap, and wonderful, wonderful sisters!

  2. isnowhere says:

    What a great letter they wrote. Thank you for sharing that quote.

  3. APX says:

    If only I had checked this site out prior to Christmas! I guess I know where I’ll be shopping next Christmas.

  4. Supertradmum says:

    Lovely present and great note. I have always seen the contemplative orders of men and woman as the Marines, out hitting the beaches first in spiritual warfare, clearing the way for us grunts. Well, I am a grunt, but suppose I should not speak for those here.

  5. NoTambourines says:

    Whoooooaa. Vanilla bean soap. Okay, sold!


    The prices are so reasonable. I clicked over out of curiosity, and was pleasantly surprised it was something I can afford. The shipping charge is not small, but worth it, since no one wants a flattened bar of soap to arrive in the mail, and it’s also an incentive to try more than one bar.

    So I did. I ordered Vanilla Bean, and Star of the Sea.

  6. HoyaGirl says:

    I ordered from the sisters for Christmas stocking stuffers, and I’m one of those who helped to make the shave set a best-seller. The combo set of mug, brush, and soap was a big hit with my husband who can’t wait to put it into action after his business trip. Our kids love the lip balm, and I can’t get enough of the hand cream. I won’t be buying lotions anywhere else for a long, long time! (We also ordered coffee from the monks too!)

  7. KAS says:

    Stocking stuffers! I wish I had thought of that– well, next year I too will be looking at this for gifting.

    I gifted coffee this year. :)

  8. New Sister says:

    I think I would be uneasy, as a woman, comparing my role to the chair of Moses… perhaps a more apt analogy would be to his battle staff – those lifting up his arms when they got tired.

  9. APX says:

    I gifted coffee this year. :)

    Me too.

    Fortunately I was able to save on shipping, as I know people living in the US who return home during Christmas. It’s the international shipping costs, taxes, and duty fees that get me.

  10. St. Epaphras says:

    I gave the gentleman’s shaving set as a Christmas gift and boy, does he love it!! Super good quality and very hard to find these items any more. Will be buying refills of the shaving soap!

  11. capchoirgirl says:

    If you’re looking for scents to try: The cloister garden is fantastic! Also my dad loves the oatmeal soap. I have just about every scent they make, as well as their lavender hand creme, which is fantastic.
    They also sell Dominican medals, books, statues…

  12. Re: as a woman —

    Moses’ life of prayer is often used as examples for contemplatives. It doesn’t matter if they’re male or female. Similarly, Elijah is a model for both male and female Carmelites, and Our Lady of Carmel is a model for both male and female Carmelites. St. Francis doesn’t stop being a model for female Franciscans just because they also have St. Clare.

    There are reasons in the spiritual life that it can be healthy for men and women to keep their separate sexes in mind, just as there is a reason for little kids to scream about boy cooties and girl cooties and separate themselves into boy and girl groups. But. In Christ, who made both sexes, there is also neither male nor female, in the same way there is no Jew or Greek. “As a Gentile, I don’t feel comfortable modelling myself on Jews like Moses or Jesus or the Virgin Mary” would sound silly or racist, even if it was meant out of modesty, not to claim Jewishness. There’s a time when we have to step up and claim our commonality in Jesus, not our differences.

    Obviously, you’re free to make your own mental imagery. But monks don’t engage in spiritual warfare any more directly than nuns do, or any less. It’s perfectly correct for nuns to use Moses as a model, and as an explanation for those unfamiliar with their vocation. (Especially Protestants taught to see religious as “escaping from the world out of fear and shame” or “selfish people who refuse to serve God.”)

  13. tealady24 says:

    Their soap is beautiful! I ordered products for Christmas and they were lovely. Funny how “fully-clothed” nuns overflow in inquiries concerning vocations.

  14. nykash says:

    Very nice… imho, there’s no better shaving than with a brush.

    I just put in an order for my wife… some of the scents are right up her alley. I feel that it’s extremely important to support vocations, whether it’s coffee, soap, or breads. While it can be more expensive (although not always), I would rather support our religious than anonymous shareholders.

  15. Tony Layne says:

    I’m saving that quote about nuns and Moses, and putting it in my “Heard Around the Web” sidebar spot!

  16. That’s too cute.

    I love their soap. Most store-bought (ha-ha, “secular”) bottled soaps contain anti-bacterials which really cause drying and cracking. It took me a couple of years to figure out what was causing such severe cracks in my hands and fingers.

    It was the sister’s soap that gave me a clue. Soon after I started using a bar while on christmas vacation at home some years ago the cracking stopped. My hands turned smooth.

    One bar lasts a long time too.

  17. leonugent2005 says:

    New Sister I personally like the image of Judith Beheading Holofernes and all that goes along with that story but if they like the Moses image more power to them.

  18. caite says:

    I love their soap..but I would buy it even if I didn’t because I love the good sisters.

  19. Br Conor OP says:

    These contemplative monasteries are the engine rooms of Dominican preaching. We friars (and the apostolic sisters and laity!) rely so much on their prayers, whether we know it or not. Thank you sisters!

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