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Abbot Damien Toilolo, O.S.B.

Abbot Damien is the fourth of eight children born to Ierenimo and Sosefina Toilolo, Samoan immigrants. Born in San Diego, he grew up in Los Angeles and attended schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District. After graduating from college with a degree in Liberal Studies from CSU Dominguez Hills, he served 3 years as a volunteer at the Franciscan Youth Center in Baltimore, Maryland, as part of a lay mission program sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Baltimore. Returning to California, he earned his California teaching credential and taught grades 6-8 in Carson at St. Philomena School with the Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus of Los Angeles. It was the Sisters who steered Abbot Damien to Valyermo.

During his twelve years as a monk of Valyermo, Abbot Damien has served his community in various roles, including postulant master, novice master, vocation director, and subprior. In June 2008 he was appointed Prior Administrator for two years, and on June 21, 2010 his community elected him Abbot for 8 years. Abbot Ansgar Schmidt, O.S.B., President of the Benedictine Congregation of the Annunciation presided over and confirmed the election.

Please keep Abbot Damien and the monks of Valyermo in your prayers.