|Abbreviation||Post-nominal letters: O.S.B.|
|Formation||5 April 1881|
|Founders||Fintan Mundwiler; Frowin Conrad|
|North and South America|
|447 monks as of 2020|
|Abbot Vincent de Paul Bataille|
|Affiliations||Roman Catholic Church|
The Swiss-American Congregation is an association of Benedictine monasteries founded in 1881 in the United States, as a part of the international Benedictine Confederation of monasteries.
During the 19th century, a number of Benedictine monasteries had been founded in the United States by monks coming from monasteries in the German-speaking region of Switzerland. The fortunes of Roman Catholic institutions in Switzerland were turbulent, especially in the 19th century. All were dissolved as a consequence of the French Revolution in 1798, but were restored by Napoleonic decree in 1803, with the exception of the Abbey of St. Gall, where the Prince-Abbot refused to make the necessary political concessions. The anti-monastic policies of the Swiss cantons, however, later brought about the dissolution of monasteries in Pfäfers (1838), Muri (1841), Fischingen (1848) and Rheinau (1863).
The outlook for Swiss Roman Catholics during the Kulturkampf was so bleak that the ancient Abbeys of Einsiedeln and Engelberg began a program of establishing new monasteries in the United States, so that the remaining Swiss monasteries would have a refuge if they were all exiled. Those pioneer monks also were to serve the large number of German people who had emigrated there. As their offshoots, these new communities remained a part of the Swiss Confederation of Benedictine monasteries.
By 1881 the number of such communities had grown that it was felt appropriate to separate them from the authority of the mother country. Accordingly, Pope Leo XIII authorized the creation of this congregation on April 5, 1881, under the patronage of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The Congregation, as of 2019, is composed of abbeys and priories throughout the United States, Mexico, Canada, and Guatemala. The Congregation numbers about 447 monks.
These are the former presidents:
The current Abbot President is Abbot Vincent de Paul Bataille elected in 2011. He resides at Marmion Abbey located in Aurora, Illinois.