Registration is still open for the Monastic Immersion Weekend for men September 11-14 but will close soon. Only a couple of spots are left. If interested in spending these fairly intense four days living in community with the monks of the abbey send email to email@example.com or call 540-955-4604…
Here’s information and the schedule for the MIW:
Monastic Immersion Weekends are intensive retreats in which participants ‘immerse’ themselves in the life of the community and monastic life. Originally intended only for men discerning a vocation, in 2013 the community expanded the MIWs to include one for men and one for men and women. These retreats are open to all-those discerning and those not candidates for monastic life but simply looking for a more intense experience in and with the community.
MIWs require participants to participate in the full life of the community. This means retreatants are expected to attend every Office in the Abbey Church including getting up at 3am to be in choir for Vigils at 3:30. Because participants in the MIW join the community for the Divine Office it means having choir practice with the monastic cantor, Fr. James somewhere around 4:45 am once or twice during the retreat and it means attending at least three conferences conducted by monks and the Companion of the Abbey on the Rule of St. Benedict, history of monasticism with special emphasis on Cistercian monasticism, and creating a personal lifestyle of prayer and praying the Divine Office.
These are mostly silent retreats, though obviously there is conversation during the conferences. Meals are taken in silence with reading in the monastic tradition.
MIWs depend on the contributions of those attending so we ask for a minimum $75 contribution for each day of the retreat if possible, plus an extra $25 to cover costs of supplies and clothing meaning a total requested contribution of $175 (March) $300 (September-note extra day). Those who wish to attend but can’t afford to make a contribution are encouraged to send email to firstname.lastname@example.org to request a scholarship.
A sample schedule for an MIW would look like this:
3:30 am Vigils
4:15 Half hour of silent prayer in the Retreat House chapel
4:45 Rest, lectio
7:00 Lauds and Mass
9:00 Conference with a monk or Companion
12:00 noon Lunch
2:00pm Mid-day prayer
2:15-4:30 Private time
8:15 The Great Silence