Our Cooperation

Det nordeuropeiska nätverkets startsida.

Kapitäl i Kloster Bebenhausen, Tyskland. Det är en variant på den typ av s.k. sjöbladskapitäl, chapiteau à feuilles d'eau, som förekommer inom cisterciensisk arkitektur under 1100-talet. Det första cisterciensklostret grundades 1098 i Cîteaux i Frankrike och orden tog sitt namn efter ortens latinska namn Cistercium. Namnet anspelar på att trakten där klostret byggdes utgjordes av sankmarker, täckta med vass. Därför pryder just vassblad, feuilles de cistel, ofta kapitäl i cisterciensiska kyrkor och kloster.

Anslagstavlan utanför Askeby klosterkyrka.

Det europeiska förbundets symbol har inspirerats av en typ s.k. sjöbladskapitäl som ofta förekommer i cisterciensisk arkitektur under 1100-talet.

De svenska medlemmarna längs 'Den cisterciensiska klostervägen'.

The Association of Askeby Abbey wants, as the abbey once did, function both locally and internationally. Hence, the association is also a member of the European Federation of Cistercian Monasteries and Convents Sites. Naturally, we are part of the Swedish network of contacts of historical abbeys, as well as one concerning North European abbey sites.


La Charte européenne des Abbayes et sites cisterciens

The sign on the notice board nearby the church tells us that Askeby is situated along the Cistercian Abbey Road; La route des Abbayes Cisterciennes.  The Association of Askeby Abbey became a member of European Federation of Cistercian Monasteries and Convents Sites (Charte européenne des Abbayes et sites cisterciens) in 2010.  It was originally a federation intended for French historical Cistercian abbeys.  In 2006, this French federation invited for the first time, representatives for abbeys in other countries to join their annual member meeting – the so called General Assembly – with intentions to form a European federation, which was also carried through during that year.  This was also the first time a general assembly was held outside of France.

Currently, six years later, more than 160 abbeys have joined this European federation.  Eleven countries and ten different languages are represented.  The federation works for cohesion between historical abbeys, and reflects the kinship that existed during the Middle Ages, when there were around two thousand vital Cistercian abbeys.  As a member in the federation, each individual abbey site is included in a wider whole, and also has the possibility to join a comprehensive and stimulating exchange of information.

The federation wants to promote the cultural tourism that is associated with the abbeys, develop the tourism industry, and in such way increase the knowledge of the Cistercian order during the Middle Ages.  The Cistercian research, on the other hand, relies on other bodies.

On the federation website, the visitor can view the Newsletter section, where member abbeys post information about ongoing activities.  This is a place for us to get inspiration and ideas of how to develop the individual public engagement.  An article from Askeby was sent to the Newsletter section and published in October 2012, describing the archaeological excavation during that summer (refer to the La Charte link below).  It may be viewed in Swedish by selecting the “Arkiv” topic on this website.

On the La Chartes website all the member abbeys are listed in alphabetical order, and presented with a brief description and a picture.  The Swedish members as of 2012 are the abbey associations of Vreta Abbey and Askeby, as well as the congregations of Nydala and Skokloster.  The president/chairman is Dominique Mangeot from Abbaye de Fontmorigny in France.

During the spring of 2012, the guide book “Sites Cisterciens d’Europe” (Cistercian Sites in Europe) was published.  In this book the member abbeys are presented in further detail in their respective language, as well as in English.  The guide book may be purchased at the four mentioned abbey sites, or may be ordered through this website (go to  Publications.)

The Swedish and the North European network

The Association of Askeby Abbey is also included, apart from the Swedish network (see link below), in the network of “Zisterzienser an Nord- und Ostsee,” that each other year invites to a conference about the Cistercian influence within cultural and spiritual life. At the conferences, study visits are arranged at nearby abbey sites. On their website (see link below) there is an article about the latest symposium arranged in Werbellinsee, where the associations of both Askeby and Vreta abbeys were represented.