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Hi. I have developed a strong interest in subjects pertaining to theology, religion, and Christian mysticism. I am not a Roman Catholic, but I am fascinated by the contemplative life. My question is: do you allow people of other or non-defined faiths to make retreats at
monasteries for short periods of time?
Thank you for your question. Yes, men and women of all faiths or no faith find welcome at our monasteries. As has been the case for centuries, monasteries extend hospitality to “travelers”. In the Medieval period, this meant offering food and rest to visitors made weary by miles and miles of walking. Today, monasteries are sanctuaries for people suffering the greater weariness of contentious public discourse, scandal, uncertainty, and the boredom resulting from over stimulation by media. A retreat in one of our guest houses would generally last three or four days. Since Trappists are generally not people inclined to proselytize, visitors professing a different faith or no faith find themselves at ease in their company and are able to spend a few days in stillness and silence listening to what ever word God might wish to communicate to them. Usually, there is a monk or nun available for retreatants to meet with if they feel a need to talk. They are also invited to attend the monastic liturgy and possibly join the monks or nuns in their daily manual labor. Your “fascination” with contemplative life would most likely lead to some interesting conversation with your Trappist brothers and sisters. I pray the Lord will bring you to our door step sometime soon! Peace.