The right to vote for the successor to Abbot Matthew as abbot of Saint Anselm Abbey and chancellor of Saint Anselm College does not belong to every member of the monastic community, though there are some monks not resident in Manchester who do have the right to vote. Essentially, the voters (or electors) are those monks in solemn vows in good standing, who have what are referred to as chapter rights.
Members of the chapter are those who can attend and vote at meetings where the abbot seeks their consent. The ancient practice in monasteries was for these meetings to begin with a reading from a chapter of the Rule of St. Benedict. The Latin word for chapter is capitulum, hence the members of the chapter are referred to as “capitulars.”
As Saint Anselm’s has monks who come under Abbot Matthew’s authority living at Woodside Priory in California, those monks living there are also part of the chapter. Monks living at Saint Anselm’s in Manchester who are not in solemn vows are not members of the chapter.
There will be twenty-five capitulars eligible to vote in the election chapter on June 4th and 5th.