Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Summer, what  there was  of it, has passed us swiftly by. Now is the time of last harvests, putting gardens "to bed", and relaxing, as much as one does in a Monastery.

Nuns with Ferndale youth group

This year, more than ever, was one of "United Nations", or maybe I should say religions. Our large group of Mormons came in March (their 7th year?) to do their work of clearing the land for us. They bring food, wonderful helpers and always good cheer. In July we had many Catholic youth come, with adults, to build and rebuild: decks, fences, a new pig house, concrete paths to the chicken house, etc., plus bringing in over 1000 bales of hay. Following them was a group of Mennonites from the Seattle area, who "picked up" where the youth left off. Then in August came another younger group of Mormons who left the grounds looking like a park. All who come are amazed at the change.

Chicken heaven -- built by Ferndale youth
We thank one and all, who came for a day or week to help out and enjoy the life of our monastic community.  It is these volunteers who make our life easier to serve the Lord. It is our privilege to share our life of prayer, hospitality and care of  the land with people of diverse views and cultures. Many who come appreciate the solitude and community. Both are essential in a Monastery and create balance, something they find missing in today's culture.

We had two women, both retired school teachers from San Diego, make their first Oblation as Benedictine Oblates - a lay person who seeks to try to live by the Rule of Benedict- this August. They have been coming for many years and we felt now is the time.  Another from Alaska will make her first Oblation at the end of this month. She is a professor at  a small college in Palmer.

We now look forward to some quiet time, which only winter seems to bring in the Monastery, as we prepare for the Holy Days of Advent and Christmas.

Blessings to all and thanks to all who are faithful to this blog.  We appreciate the comments