The abbey of Averbode

The abbey was founded in 1134. In the early years, the monastic community, which originally consisted of men and women, survived through agriculture where the Norbertians were helped by lay brothers. Originally it was a double monastery. The sisters moved to their own abbey at the beginning of the 13th century. This community existed until 1796.

Picture by Harry Fabel

The French proclaimed almost all monasteries and abbeys in 1796; The abbey was sold and the monastery was broken down. The monumental pipe organ of Guillaume Robustelly from 1772 was purchased by the Saint-Lambert church in Helmond, The Netherlands, where it is still admirable and listenable. In 1802, the Norbertines acquired the abbey again and after the independence of Belgium in 1830, the monastery life in Averbode resumed.

In the abbey, there was a printing factory that closed its doors in 1996, but the extensive publishing house of the youth magazines originally made in the abbey still exists. There was also a guest quarter, a library, a reflection center, a brewery, cheese factory, vineyard, fish pond, orchard, and an abbey farm in the abbey. The abbey farm is still active today.

Picture by Pixabay

In 2013 an agreement was reached with Belgomilk and Milcobel, two industrial food companies to make cheese, La Lorraine Bakery Group got a contract to bake bread, and the Huyghe brewery to remake the original abbey beer Averbode.