Today, people young and old, are turning to Benedictine communities in their search for a balanced, meaningful way of living. Thanks to the wisdom of the Rule of Benedict, tested and lived out over time, Benedictine sisters embrace a way of life that provides for contemplation and service, meaning and growth in the company of others. Most Benedictine communities have flourishing oblate communities and retreatants who come for prayer, silence, spiritual mentoring and the presence and intimacy of community.
In a blog about the new monasticism and the spiritual hunger of young adults, Jamie Manson notes that young adults are seeking “presence, mentoring and intimacy.” Many young adults say that their ideal religion would offer them “a place where they can be quiet and practice some type of meditation” and “a small group to meet with regularly just to talk.” (—National Catholic Reporter, Grace on the Margins, The spiritual hunger of young adults)
The sisters at Holy Wisdom Monastery recognize that young people today are seeking mentors on their spiritual journey. The Benedictine way provides rich resources of prayer, meditation, community and wise elders that can speak to the spiritual hunger of many today.
Here at Holy Wisdom Monastery, the sisters offer several retreat experiences in which young, single women can reflect on their lives in the company of the sisters and other women like themselves. At the Exploring Benedictine Community retreat, women do centering prayer and pray the liturgy of the hours with the sisters. We engage in sharing around important life questions such as where have you experienced grace in your life? How do you find meaning in life’s challenges? The sisters offer wisdom from our lived experience of the spiritual life in community.
Our conversation continues around the table at meals. Over the course of the weekend we create a temporary but meaningful experience of community. For those who can’t come for a weekend, we offer A Day Away retreat as a brief taste of the balance of quiet contemplation and small group conversation. A meal and prayer together contribute to the experience of community.
Communities living the Rule of Benedict today have wisdom and experience to share with people who consider themselves spiritual but not religious. The sisters at Holy Wisdom Monastery want to be mentors to the next generation of spiritual seekers. We hope you will pass the word along.
Read other blog posts in Lynne’s series, Building Community.