Within a Benedictine monastery, the monks are guided by their Abbot as they follow the 1,500 year old Rule of St. Benedict. While a monk is obedient to his Abbot, chapters 71 and 72 of the Rule also note that a monk needs to practice self-discipline and mutual obedience, and "they should each try to be the first to show respect to the other (Rom 12:10), supporting with the greatest patience one another’s weaknesses of body or behavior, and earnestly competing in obedience to one another. No one is to pursue what he judges better for himself, but instead, what he judges better for someone else. To their fellow monks they show the pure love of brothers...." To practically live out this commitment, the monks approve what is known as a "Customary" that guides the daily living-out of the monastic life. Thus, the Rule of St. Benedict and the Customary of the Abbey serve as the freely-chosen means by which monks comport their christian lives. When a monk struggles to live up to these commitments, then it is often his monastic brothers that are the first to assist him, affirm him, or challenge him as part of their commitment to mutual obedience and love of their brother.
Our Academy, reflecting that same ethos, has a Student Handbook that also guides the daily living out of the student life at Subiaco. In turn, the student body adopted an Honor Code that each student is expected to follow and strive to uphold. Just like at any College or University in the United States, it is also the elected "Honor Court" that must oversee any violations. At Subiaco and reflecting our monastic heritage, though, fellow brothers on our Honor Court undertake this responsibility especially out of love and a desire to better their brother.
The Honor Court is composed of students who have been peer-elected to uphold the student body Subi-Man Honor Code (Stability, Understanding, Brotherhood, Integrity, Moderation, Accountability and Nobility). The Honor Court is comprised of one student from the freshman, sophomore and junior classes with two representatives from the senior class, one of which acts as the Chief Justice. A student who is found to be in violation of the code is referred to the Honor Court and a hearing conducted to decide if the student in question is found to have dishonored himself or the community. The Honor Court is obliged to bring their findings to the Dean of Men with the court’s recommended course of action. A copy of the court’s proceedings is kept on file as a reference for future cases. A member of the faculty is appointed by the Headmaster to serve as advisor.
The student body has adopted and expects each student to strive to uphold the following Honor Code:
As a student of Subiaco, I understand that I am a part of something bigger than myself. This means that I have the rights of being a Subiaco student, a Trojan, and later, to become an alumnus. Rights and responsibilities go together. My responsibility is to uphold the honor and tradition of Subiaco, to refrain from doing things that would bring dishonor to Subiaco. Subiaco Abbey and Academy and our traditions have ancient roots. These traditions started at this location over 135 years ago, but through our founding, these traditions extend back to St. Benedict who lived during the fall of Rome. St. Benedict and Subiaco follow the Tradition of the Catholic Church which connects all of us back to the time of Christ and His apostles, who are Jews in the lineage of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. At this point we have arrived at the foundations of written human history. Subiaco is a shining city on a hill from which young men have gone out into the world to bring the light of faith, character, scholarship and brotherhood to others. Subiaco, and I as one of its ambassadors, can change the world for the better. But to truly make the world better, I must first become better. I must become a Subi-man.
A Subi-man exhibits Benedictine values. By calling myself a Trojan or a Subi-man, I promise to remember these values, to carry them with me, and to exhibit them in my behavior to the best of my ability. I promise to take correction from others when I fail and to encourage others in their struggles to become a true Subi-man.
A Subi-man lives the following values:
S – stability;
U – understanding;
B – brotherhood;
I – integrity;
M – moderation;
A – accountability;
N – nobility.
By living out these values in my daily life, I will become an example to others. Some men may look up to and admire me for these traits, but others may despise me because I exhibit the qualities that they have not had the courage or opportunity to develop in their own life. A true Subi-man, like Christ himself, will be both a light to some and a stumbling block to others.