A word from the Guest Master
Just the other day I was asked by a guest: Do you like being Guest Master?
Another way of asking that is: “Do you love the monastic life?”
The Abbey Guest Master is a visible point of hospitality, but he is little to nothing without the Abbot and community he represents. If there is no praying community here, there is no reason to come to Mount Angel. If our guests encounter no one here striving to live a life of charity, one might as well go elsewhere.
Our vision for the Saint Benedict Guesthouse and Retreat Center is that of a place of true encounter with Christ. In the newly renovated guesthouse, a gracious spirit of welcome will be physically evident with a parking-level entry that offers a clear sense of arrival to the retreat center. There will be a drop-off area, new lobby, and parking lot turnaround.
After welcoming the guest “with all the courtesy of love,” St. Benedict says in his Rule that we are to “pray together,” and then “the divine law is read to the guest for his instruction.” After that, “every kindness is shown to him.” In other words, feed guests well in body and soul. Provide a clean and safe place to sleep. And welcome them into the heart of the community, into its life of liturgical prayer.
Peace is Christ’s gift to us. The monks of Mount Angel Abbey want our renewed and expanded Guesthouse and Retreat Center to be a place where together we can carry the gift of Christ’s Peace to our families, friends, and to all the world.
Fr. Pius X Harding, O.S.B.
Mount Angel Abbey