Tuesday, March 24, 2020

What's It Like in a Monastery During These Days of COVID-19?

As many of us have been spending more time on the phone, or FaceTime, or Zoom, or whatever way we connect with technology, people have been asking what it's like in the monastery during these days of necessary distancing. We don't have any guests or visitors right now; nearly all of us usually going out to ministry are staying home; we are seeking new ways to support one another.

Yes, things are different...but they are still very monastic.

So, I decided to take a few photos illustrating some of the ways we are adapting here at Mount Saint Benedict.

1. A large, gridded white board hangs outside our community room with a variety of activities offered, creating a new kind of horarium.

2. Last night was the first (with hopefully more to come) folk concert during dinner time...fun sing-a-longs! Thanks, Marilyn!

3. Waste cans outside each bathroom so that you don't touch the doors with your clean hands and can throw away the paper towel afterward instead.

3. Hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes...everywhere!

4. You can see that the tray holder is down on one side of the line. We are serving meals to one another so that there are fewer people touching the serving utensils. "The members should serve one another." (RB 35:1)

5. A variety of light viewing options. Today is Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.

6. And no names in the guest wing. I don't know if this has ever happened (outside of community meetings) since I entered the monastery.

So, yes, as everyone across the globe acclimates to a new way of being for who-knows-how-long, this a brief glimpse of some acclimating here.

Be safe and healthy.

Let us walk in the holy presence.

What's It Like in a Monastery During These Days of COVID-19?

As many of us have been spending more time on the phone, or FaceTime, or Zoom, or whatever way we connect with technology, people have been ...