Fr. Joseph Jensen

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
Professed Date: Feb 10, 1948
Title: Old Testament Scholar

I grew up in Chicago, where I attended public grammar and high schools. I then entered the Army Air Corps during World War II and served just under three years (Feb. 1942 to Dec. 1945). While in service I met Fr. Charles O’Laughlin, a monk of St. Anselm’s who was on supply at the time. He had a great influence on my spiritual life and inspired me to come to St. Anselm’s, which I did in 1946. Here I have found my vocation. I was simply professed in 1948 and made my solemn profession in 1951.

I then studied theology at Sant’Anselmo, Rome, for several years. After priestly ordination back in Washington in 1954, I began teaching in St. Anselm’s Priory (later Abbey) School in 1955. I have continued teaching since then, ten years at the Abbey School, later at the nearby Catholic University of America. For a while we had our own theology school, where I was privileged to teach the Scripture courses, which continues to be my field and my great love after the Abbey itself. Both have enriched my life beyond measure and have, hopefully, enriched my outreach to others through my priestly ministry and teaching. Among my publications is the textbook God’s Word to Israel, which is currently undergoing revision for a fourth edition. In July 2016 I completed my seventieth year here, and I have rejoiced every day in my vocation as a monk.