All our guests are welcome and encouraged to pray with the monks as we daily sing the praises of God our Father, in Christ Jesus, made possible by the action of the Holy Spirit.
The Abbey church is both a house of God and a dwelling place for His People. You are most welcome to enter this sacred space. We ask that, while in the Abbey church, you turn off your phones or electronic devices, be dressed modestly and maintain a reverent silence conducive to prayer. Please refrain from entering the choir and sanctuary. These are set apart for the monks.
For those attending the celebration of the Liturgy of the Hours, you will find to the right of the vestibule as you enter, prayer books for each hour. The appropriate page numbers for each hour are listed on the number board; also to the right side of the vestibule. You are welcome to chant along with the monks, keeping in mind the rhythm and volume practiced by the community. Or, you may wish to remain quietly seated and simply welcome the Word of God as it is proclaimed by the chant.
For our guests who are joining us for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, we offer the guidelines for communion as issued by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. These can be found as an appendix in the back of this booklet. Texts and music for each Mass can be found on the vestibule tables.
Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament is most Fridays between Vespers and Compline. The Sacrament of Penance (Confession) is offered daily one half hour before Holy Mass, or you are welcome to make personal arrangements with the Guest Master.
"I said, I have resolved to keep watch over my ways that I may never sin with my tongue. I was silent and was humbled, and I refrained even from good words." Psalm 38:2-3 Silence is practiced in the Benedictine monastic tradition in order to create an environment of listening. Saint Benedict begins the Holy Rule with these words: "Listen, O my son, to the master's instructions, and attend to them with the ear of your heart." Prologue 1
While wireless internet connections are available in the lobby and conference level lounge areas (GUEST: no password required), we encourage our guests to make their time at the Abbey a truly quiet time devoid of the many attachments and distractions that the world so readily offers. If one is enjoying music as part of their personal retreat, we ask that earphones be used at all times. It is the practice in the monastery to walk lightly and close doors softly as a charitable awareness of others.
There is a chapel of the Most Blessed Sacrament for those who wish to adore the Lord in His sacramental presence among us, and a quiet reading room nearby for those who would like to sit by the fireplace as they read. Both of these areas are on the garden level at the east end of the building.
The Sacred Scriptures are placed in every room for your use. Benedictine monks practice Lectio Divina each day. Lectio is a four-fold manner in which to pray the Scriptures:
Lectio - Read the Word of God carefully and repetitively
Meditatio - Meditate on the Word
Oratio - Form a prayerful response to the Word received
Contemplatio - Open one's heart to the possibility of a quiet resting in the divine presence