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Merton's Correspondence with:

Br. Patrick Hart; Br. Simon; Br. Simon Hart; Hart, Simon, Br. M. Simon, Br. M.

Hart, Patrick, Br., O.C.S.O., 1925-2019  printer

Brother Patrick Hart, Merton's last secretary, and Thomas Merton.  Photograph by Br. Maurice Flood, O.C.S.O. (Copyright Thomas Merton Legacy Trust.)  
Brother Patrick Hart, Merton's last secretary, and Thomas Merton. Photograph by Br. Maurice Flood, O.C.S.O. (Copyright Thomas Merton Legacy Trust.) 

Descriptive Summary

Record Group: Section A - Correspondence
Dates of materials: 1954-1980, bulk 1954-1969
Volume: 96 item(s); 116 pg(s)

Scope and Content


Br. Patrick Hart was Merton's last secretary. In his earlier years at the monastery, he went by the religious name Br. Simon. He continued to foster Merton's legacy through the interviews he has conducted and through editing many of the collections of Merton's essays, journals, and correspondence.

Usage Guidelines and Restrictions

Please click here for general restrictions concerning Merton's correspondence.

Note: records marked as "Gethsemani Tadié Files" are in the "Tadié, Marie" file in the correspondence in the regular sequence of chronology.

Related Information and Links

See also published letters from Merton to Hart in The School of Charity, pp. 305-306, 319-320, 343-345, 350, 398-399, 404, 406-408 and 411-417.

Other Finding Aids

If the person in correspondence with Merton has full text records in the Merton Center Digital Collections, there will be a numeric link to them below.

Series List

This Record Sub-Group is not divided into Series and is arranged chronologically.

Container List

Click icons for links: ✓="Published | Library Record", ✉="Scanned" | 🗷="Scanned, Viewable Only at Merton Center"

#DateFrom/ToFirst LinesPub ✓Notes
 y/m/dMerton Scan ✉ 
1. 1954/06/06 other from Fox, James Has litteras perlegentibus fidem facimus atque testamur, Nos ad majorem Dei gloriam Sanctorumque [relic authentication certificate for bone fragments from St. Simon the Apostle given by Dom James Fox, Abbot of Gethsemani Abbey. To Br. Simon (Br. Patrick Hart) on the day of his temporary or simple vows, Pentecost 1954 - the certificate was folded and found in 2021 among a collection of mimeographs by Thomas Merton] «detailed view»
2. 1957/no/no? TNS from Merton For the Censors of the Cuban Journal (Secular Journal is now the proper name) The author's viewpoint [undated (likely between 1957 and 1958) with "Bro. Simon" handwritten at the top] «detailed view»
3. 1964/03/18 TLS to Merton To quote from the General's letter to Rev. Father of March 14: "C'est donc entendu, comme vous me «detailed view»
4. 1966/02/17 (#01) TANS to Merton What do you think we should do about this request? Brother Pius doesn't have any color photos [verso: Merton's response - see record two of the same date] «detailed view»
5. 1966/02/17 (#02) HNS from Merton Tell them I can't be caught, am to agile. Too many pix lately anyway! I enjoyed seeing your good [verso of Br. Patrick's note of the same date] «detailed view»
6. 1966/04/no? HNS from Merton Many thanks for your note and bon-voyage. It's great that someone will actually start working «detailed view»
7. 1966/06/19 TLS from Merton Thanks for your note from Monte Cistello and the quote from Maritain which in no way surprised me. «detailed view»
8. 1966/07/04 TL[c] to Merton Come sta Lei? (That's about as far as my Italian will take me for the moment, so let's return to [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
9. 1966/11/16 (#01) TALS from Merton Many thanks for the beautiful little Peguy book which arrived some time ago, also for your card, «detailed view»
10. 1966/11/16 (#02) TL[c] from Merton Many thanks for the beautiful little Peguy book which arrived some time ago, also for your card, «detailed view»
11. 1966/11/24 TALS to Merton It was a real delight to receive your letter, and I am trying hard to adjust to your new name, which [dated "Thanksgiving Day 1966" - from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
12. 1966/12/13 HCS from Merton Thanks for your letter- joy and peace to all the gang there. Keep us in your prayers, we need them! [verso of Christmas card: black and white photograph of a black child leaning on a wooden fence with the message "I AM CHRIST"] «detailed view»
13. 1967/01/31 TALS to Merton Your Christmas greetings and welcome note were much appreciated as it was the only Christmas [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
14. 1967/04/03 HCS to Merton We were all distressed to hear of your recent hospitalization. I hope the operation was not too bad [dated "Eastertide 1967" - April 3 postmark] «detailed view»
15. 1967/08/15 (#01) TALS[x] to Merton You will soon be receiving a letter from Dom Francisco of Frattocchie, although Fra Filiberto [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
16. 1967/08/15 (#02) TALS to Merton You will soon be receiving a letter from Dom Francisco of Frattocchie, although Fra Filiberto [from Monte Cistello, Rome - encloses card with color photo of mountains, wooden cross trees and a quote in Italian from Galatians 6:14] «detailed view»
17. 1967/08/23 (#01) TALS  from Merton to Timothy Kelly and Patrick Hart I guess it is ok to answer you both with a single letter. Your letters came about the same time [addressed to both Br. Patrick Hart and Fr. Timothy Kelly in Rome] «detailed view»
18. 1967/08/23 (#02) TAL[c]  from Merton to Timothy Kelly and Patrick Hart I guess it is ok to answer you both with a single letter. Your letters came about the same time [addressed to both Br. Patrick Hart and Fr. Timothy Kelly in Rome] «detailed view»
19. 1967/09/01 (#01) TLS from Merton I forgot Fr Timothy wasn't there. Maybe you sent the letter on to him. Meanwhile I have finished «detailed view»
20. 1967/09/01 (#02) TL[c] from Merton I forgot Fr Timothy wasn't there. Maybe you sent the letter on to him. Meanwhile I have finished «detailed view»
21. 1967/09/04 HLS to Merton Many thanks for your letter, which I forwarded to Tim at Mont-des-Cats. Since then Filiberto has [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
22. 1967/09/28 TALS to Merton Your note of September 1 reached me only last Monday when I returned from my retreat-- no mail [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
23. 1967/10/09 TL[c] from Merton Many thanks for the photos. I'll go through them and all the others I have since I got, and will «detailed view»
24. 1967/10/14 (#01) TLS from Merton Well, it is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, and I had better do some atoneing [sic] by writing «detailed view»
25. 1967/10/14 (#02) TL[c] from Merton Well, it is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, and I had better do some atoneing [sic] by writing «detailed view»
26. 1967/12/04 TLS  from Hart, Patrick et al. / to Merton Must tell you immediately how completely delighted we all are with your quick, bristling, kind [see "Doerner, Linus" file for original - from Gethsemani monks in Rome (all have separate correspondence files) - Linus Doerner, Timothy Kelly, Barnabas (Fr. Patrick H. Reardon), Felix Donahue, and Patrick Hart] «detailed view»
27. 1968/01/19 TL[c] to Merton It was a great joy to receive news of the community's choice of Father Flavian as Abbot [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
28. 1968/06/13 TALS to Merton It has been a long time since I last heard from you, directly at least. However, I can well imagine [from Monte Cistello, Rome] «detailed view»
29. 1968/09/05 (#01) TLS to Merton All the addresses of the libraries are listed here with MONKS POND, but I can find nothing for [verso: note from Merton] «detailed view»
30. 1968/09/05 (#02) HNS from Merton I could use 15 copied of Aelred. Thanx. [sic] Sister Therese [-] 3516 West Center St [undated - verso of note from Br. Patrick of 1968/09/05] «detailed view»
31. 1968/09/17 HLS from Merton Hi! Everything was fine in New Mexico-- now I'm leaving for Alaska. In New Mexico I stopped at the [from Benedictine Monastery of Christ in the Desert in Abiquiu, New Mexico] «detailed view»
32. 1968/09/18 HLS from Merton I just tried to notarize this but it's utterly impossible with the present form. It has to be [from Alaska] «detailed view»
33. 1968/09/20 HLS from Merton I haven't had much time for letter writing - pretty busy with the nuns to whom I am giving [from Eagle River, Alaska] «detailed view»
34. 1968/09/24 HLS from Merton Thanks for latest letters and Mass stipends. May come in handy - never know when I will fail to be [on stationery of Christ in the Desert Monastery in New Mexico, but Merton writes "Alaska" in the top corner] «detailed view»
35. 1968/09/26 TLS from Merton Thanks for the latest mail, including the New Orleans archbishop etc. Maybe you could reply to Bp [from Anchorage, Alaska] «detailed view»
36. 1968/09/27 HLS from Merton Here is the address of Mrs Johnstone - to whom Selected Poems and Raids on the [from Anchorage, Alaska] «detailed view»
37. 1968/09/30 (#01) TL[c] to Merton Many thanks for your fine letter of the 26th from Anchorage which came this morning. Will take care «detailed view»
38. 1968/09/30 (#02) HLS from Merton I'm still in Alaska - but leaving day after tomorrow. Could the bookstore please send Sign [from Anchorage, Alaska] «detailed view»
39. 1968/10/02 HLS from Merton I'm leaving today after two very fruitful weeks. Expect to find some mail in Santa Barbara tomorrow [from Anchorage, Alaska] «detailed view»
40. 1968/10/03 TALS from Merton Just got here today, found letters, pix etc. Many thanks. Actually I don't need to give you power [from Santa Barbara, California] «detailed view»
41. 1968/10/07 HLS from Merton Thanks much for all the material sent here. I'm returning the Ave Maria letter and the [from Redwoods Monastery in California] «detailed view»
42. 1968/10/14 HLS from Merton I am sending a couple of checks - when they are made out to Fr Louis they are a little hard to cash [from San Francisco - on stationery for the "Committee of Southern Churchmen"] «detailed view»
43. 1968/10/21 (#01) HLS from Merton I got the first package of you sent here - many thanks. Thailand and India have been wonderful [from Calcutta] «detailed view»
44. 1968/10/21 (#02) other   Novice at wheel causes death [-] Hindustan Times Correspondent [-] New Delhi, Oct. 29- A labourer [Merton sends a newspaper clipping with two articles checked: "Novice at wheel causes death" and "Shoe-lifter arrested"] «detailed view»
45. 1968/10/25 HLS from Merton 2 packets of letters today. OK to use notes on Future of Monasticism in the new magazine. [from the Oberoi Grand Hotel in Calcutta] «detailed view»
46. 1968/10/27 HLS from Merton Thank God this silly meeting is over - I am making a sort of day of recollection and getting back my [from Calcutta] «detailed view»
47. 1968/10/29 HLS from Merton Delhi is a big improvement over Calcutta. Better climate, nice city, and quite a few Tibetan [from New Delhi] «detailed view»
48. 1968/11/02 TLS to Merton Many thanks for your two letters which arrived yesterday, appropriately All Saints Day- [dated "All Souls Day 1968"] «detailed view»
49. 1968/11/05 HPCS from Merton I am in this sort of country only better. And higher upon the mountains. Have been making a good [verso: color postcard of mountains around Dharamsala - taped to black and white photograph of Merton and Amiya Chakravarty and others in Calcutta] «detailed view»
50. 1968/11/06 TALS[x] to Merton Well, it appears that we have a new President, and I can't say I am overjoyed. Still, as the old «detailed view»
51. 1968/11/09 (#01) TALS  from Merton to Friends This newsletter is not a reply to mail because I have not been getting mail on this Asian trip [from the Hotel Imperial in New Delhi - titled "ASIAN LETTER 1."] «detailed view»
52. 1968/11/09 (#02) TLS from Merton I rolled in here this am at five, after a long night ina [sic] train. I took this opportunity while [from the Hotel Imperial in New Delhi - verso of second page of "ASIAN LETTER 1." addressed to "Friends" of the same date] «detailed view»
53. 1968/11/10 TALS from Merton I typed out the notes for the Bangkok talk but didn't have carbon paper and anyhow I guess it needs [from the Hotel Imperial in New Delhi] «detailed view»
54. 1968/11/11 HLS from Merton OK - thanks for all the mail here in Calcutta- I arrived this AM and found the USIS closed but [from the Oberoi Grand Hotel in Calcutta] «detailed view»
55. 1968/11/15 TALS[x] to Merton Wonderful to receive your card from New Delhi the other day and yesterday your ASIAN LETTER I, «detailed view»
56. 1968/11/19 HLS from Merton I am just finishing a few days of solitary retreat in the Himalayas. I managed to get permission «detailed view»
57. 1968/11/25 TALS from Merton It is late at night at I am dropping from fatigue and ready to get to bed as early as possible, but «detailed view»
58. 1968/11/27 HLS from Merton Bob Lax informs me that Emmett Williams wants some stuff of mine in an anthology of concrete [from the Connemara Hotel in Madras] «detailed view»
59. 1968/11/no? HCS from Merton Best wishes to everybody. I will try to write a long letter about the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan [from Dharamsala, India - printed with drawings of yaks and a phrase with the translation "May you have a long life, free from illness, full of happiness and prosperity."] «detailed view»
60. 1968/12/03 HLS from Merton I have not written before from Ceylon because of a postal strike here- and am not certain this [from The Galle Face Hotel in Columbo, Ceylon] «detailed view»
61. 1968/12/05 HLS from Merton I got the Singapore mail at American Express here today- including a nice newsy letter of Fr [from Raffles Hotel, Singapore] «detailed view»
62. 1968/12/08 HLS from Merton I am in Bangkok- down town at a hotel, but leaving in a few minutes for our meeting place- about 30 [from Bangkok] «detailed view»
63. 1969/03/24 TALS[x] to Editions Albin Michel Your letter addressed to "Father Abbot" was received and turned over to me for reply. Father «detailed view»
64. 1969/04/18 HLS from Tadié, Marie The Abbot General, Dom Ignace Gillet, gave me your name as being the person who looks after Father «detailed view»
65. 1969/04/28 TL[c] to Tadié, Marie Merci bien for your welcome letter of April 18th in regard to the unpublished works of the late «detailed view»
66. 1969/07/26 (#01) TLS to Center from Hart, Patrick Here are a couple of items for the Collection. Japanese edition of THOUGHTS IN SOLITUDE, and also «detailed view»
67. 1969/07/26 (#02) TNS to Center from Hart, Patrick PS. I am also enclosing photocopies of correspondence between Father Louis and myself during his «detailed view»
68. 1980/03/27 TLS to Center from Hart, Patrick This is a quasi-official letter to say that my letters to Father Louis (Thomas Merton) can be shown «detailed view»
69. undated/no/no HN from Merton 1. Geography of Lograire to. New Directions (pay Mrs Karam.) 2. Climate of Monastic Prayer. «detailed view»
70. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Cleaning out files, I know this is not cricket, but there is a lot of material that should perhaps «detailed view»
71. undated/no/no TAN from Merton Congratulations. Off to a good start. Keep it up, and by all means get after the Ninian Book too, «detailed view»
72. undated/no/no HNS from Merton Could you please get this to F. Paul for censorship - Harpers Mag. wants it for November issue, «detailed view»
73. undated/no/no HNS from Merton Did a novitiate copy of Monastic Studies come? I got one for myself as contributor - can we have «detailed view»
74. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Dir Bruder Patrig [-] Og tank vor de bladet mini tank cant rid a damting [-] Must be gud tho, «detailed view»
75. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Here are two memos referring to problem of disposal of mss etc. in case of death or something. «detailed view»
76. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Here's another one. I guess it could be stenciled too. 50 copies ought to be plenty. One or two «detailed view»
77. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Here's mailing list for the mag. Third issue just coming out. Wd you be willing to take care «detailed view»
78. undated/no/no HNS from Merton I am sending to New Directions the ms of Geography of Lograire. Have not checked it all through «detailed view»
79. undated/no/no TNS from Merton I don't know if this will be one of your last official acts, but anyway will you take note of this «detailed view»
80. undated/no/no HN from Merton I sent them a filled in questionnaire - a report is to be prepared some time. They may write for «detailed view»
81. undated/no/no HNS from Merton I will be in St. Anthony's Hospital a few days. Could you send on letters until I call? «detailed view»
82. undated/no/no HNS[x] from Merton I wrote him several months ago. Said it wd be different to find publisher. The ms is on the chest, «detailed view»
83. undated/no/no HNS from Merton Many thanks - I could use 6 or 8 of each one of the books - If this is too much for mailbox maybe «detailed view»
84. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Many thanks for the poetry ms-- beautifully done. Fine. I'll leave one of the carbons with you «detailed view»
85. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Many thanks indeed. Always glad to get a pleasant surprise. What I like best about this one «detailed view»
86. undated/no/no HNS from Merton May I please have a new ordo - urgent!! Thanx in Jesu [-] fr m Louis «detailed view»
87. undated/no/no HNS from Merton May I please have some of the notepaper with the new letterhead - (very effective)? Do you have «detailed view»
88. undated/no/no HNS from Merton May I please have Xerox copies of all our contracts with Sudamericana? Needed for important «detailed view»
89. undated/no/no TNS from Merton No need to keep letters unless you yourself think you need them. I leave you to judge. The letter «detailed view»
90. undated/no/no other   QUESTIONNAIRE relative to the themes to be discussed in Group [-] This questionnaire has been [Merton has annotations throughout this questionnaire about the monastic life and applicability of Western monastic forms in Asia - Jean Leclercq, O.S.B. is referenced throughout] «detailed view»
91. undated/no/no HNS from Merton Thanks for the contracts. The main one is missing. It is for Collected Works. Is this around? «detailed view»
92. undated/no/no HN[x] from Merton This is excellent. I made a couple of notations, but merely as queries, you can decide - I like it «detailed view»
93. undated/no/no HNS from Merton This is the important one. Can I please have a Xerox of this? I will hold the others while this «detailed view»
94. undated/no/no HNS from Merton to Censors. is a bit Dynamitic... handle w. care?? Thanx in «detailed view»
95. undated/no/no HNS from Merton Will you please extract from the out-going mail my letter to Prof Harry Cargas, St Louis? «detailed view»
96. undated/no/no TNS from Merton Your Celtic monasticism seems very good. I have no criticism to offer. If the Collectanea doesn't «detailed view»

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