The Brothers of Saint John desire to be like the apostle John in the Church.
The Brothers of Saint John desire to be like the apostle John in the Church.

The Brothers of Saint John are a Catholic Religious Congregation, founded in 1975. The brothers received from their founder, Father Marie-Dominique Philippe (a Dominican), a great love for Saint John and the Three Wisdoms as taught by Saint Thomas Aquinas. The Brothers along with the Apostolic and Contemplative Sisters, as well as the Lay Oblates, form the Family of Saint John.


The Spirit of the Brothers of Saint John is that of the Beloved Disciple of Jesus, who is called to live in close intimacy with our Lord and to witness faithfully to his light and to his love.

-To follow Christ as Saint John followed Him.

-To form our hearts and minds at the school of the apostle Saint John.

-To offer christian and human formation to those who are searching for meaning in their lives.


  • A life of silent prayer, adoration, the Eucharist and the Divine Office.
  • When it comes to fraternal charity, Saint John is one of the most eloquent authors in the whole of the New Testament. In his Gospel we find Jesus’ new commandment: “Love one another; just as I have loved you” (Jn 13: 34), and his first letter is a lively exhortation to fraternal love: “Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God” (1 Jn 4 :7).
  • In his contemplation of Christ, St John is a model for us; hence he is the inspiration for our prayer life. The Brothers seek an ever deeper union with Christ both personally and in community so that their hearts might be united to the intentions of the heart of Jesus.
  • The writings of St John show us just how much he thirsted to contemplate the mystery of Christ and to proclaim it. Our studies have no other goal than this : to know God, to discover His loving plan for mankind, and to proclaim it. This translates into our lives as a lifelong philosophical and theological search, through which we put our intellect at the service of faith.
  • From Pentecost onward we see St John working with the other apostles to proclaim the risen Christ. His apostolic life took on many different forms, each adapted to the needs of his contemporaries: he proclaimed Jesus to the Jews and to the pagans; he drew close to the suffering churches when he wrote the Apocalypse; he exhorted the new generation of Christians to charity in his First Letter, and in his Gospel he proclaimed the salvation offered by the Lord to everyone. Our apostolic life is inspired by his example.


The Brothers of Saint John seek to offer themselves to God through: 


Total consecration to the Blessed Trinity can only be fully realized through the sacrifice of Christ, our High Priest, who offers himself upon the Cross as a holocaust victim to the merciful love of the Father. For this reason, each Brother has at heart to strive to share in the mystery of the priesthood of Christ as profoundly as possible through Mary.


The royal priesthood of the faithful (cf. 1 Peter 2:9) is a precious gift given by Christ to His Church. Whether ordained a priest or not, all of the Brothers share the common vocation of seeking to follow Saint John’s example. What is Saint John’s example? He sought to follow the Lamb wherever he went (Rev. 14), even to the Cross where he accomplished his sacerdotal work as the Beloved Son. In and through this royal priesthood, the Community strives to glorify the Father with Christ and to help today’s world rediscover a sense of adoration and fraternal charity.


Seeking truth is another key dimension of the spirit of the Community, which is the call to know and live in the truth as fully as possible. The Brothers seek the Three Wisdoms. as taught by Saint Thomas Aquinas: Mystical Wisdom, Theological Wisdom and Philosophical Wisdom.

In seeking Wisdom, the Brothers strive above all else to know and love the Word of God as found in the living Tradition of the Church and as presented by the Church’s Magisterium.


We are called to make our priories places where love and truth come together. Our priories are intended to be homes which radiate prayer, charity and light.


From 7 philosophy students who desired an authentic religious life springs a community devoted to walking in the footsteps of Saint John.

A community seeking to respond to Christ’s mission to “present the patrimony of the faith to men of our time… in an understandable and persuasive fashion” (Evangelii Nuntiandi, 3).

At the beginning, the fundamental characteristics of the community quickly appeared: insistence on the quest for truth through philosophical and theological enquiry; a life consecrated to God, emphasizing silent prayer in community and the Eucharist; the importance of communal life in intense fraternal charity.

Yet it is impossible to live all this without the discovery of a personal bond with the Virgin Mary whom we receive as our Mother, following the example of Saint John (Jn. 19:27): “And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they may also be consecrated in truth” (John 17:19).



Birth of the Community of Saint John: Seven students of the University of Fribourg in Switzerland asked Fr. Marie-Dominique Philippe, a Dominican philosopher and theologian, to be their spiritual father and to give them a solid theological formation. On December 8th, the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception the first brothers consecrated themselves to the Blessed Virgin Mary and thus was born the Community of Saint John.

Canonical Recognition

First Canonical Recognition: The growing group of students was associated with the Cistercian Abbey of Lérins, which rooted the brothers’ life in a monastic spirit.

Contemplative Sisters

The Contemplative Sisters of Saint John were founded.

Apostolic Sisters

The Apostolic Sisters of Saint John were founded.


Recognition as a Religious Congregation of Diocesan Right by the Bishop of Autun (Burgundy, France).

First Priory in the USA

First priory in the United States (Laredo, Texas).

First Foundations

First foundations in Africa (Senegal), Asia (Taiwan) and South America (Brazil).


The Community is structured into Vicariates. (Regions of Government covering several countries).

Foundation in Illinois

Foundation of our English Speaking Novitiate in Princeville, Illinois.

Prior General

Our founder passed on his role as prior general to the first elected Brother to succeed him.

Foundation in New Jersey

Foundation of our priory in Orange, New Jersey.

Our founder

Our founder, Father Marie-Dominique Philippe, dies on August 26th.


First foundation in Oceania: (New Zealand).

Foundation in Colorado

Our latest priory in the USA opens its doors in September in Denver, Colorado.

Provincial Structure

Community decides to decentralize opting for a provincial structure.

The Provinces

The General Chapter decides to establish Provinces: Africa, Asia-Oceania, the Americas, Europe, and France. 5 Provinces in all.

Provincial Chapters

The first provincial chapters are held and provincial-priors are elected for each Province.