Monday, February 13, 2012

Benet Hill Monastery

We spent last weekend up at the Benet Hill Monastery, at the retreat center run by the Benedictine nuns.

Friday evening we sat Vespers with the nuns. Leece thoroughly enjoyed this, as she joined the nuns in singing the psalmody. Friday was also the feast day of Saint Scholastica, making the day all the more significant to the nuns.

We browsed the bookstore, and the library, which is a small but magnificent collection illustrating the wide range of interests of the nuns. Leece was able to find a very nice translation from the German of a book examining the Psalms.

The halls of the monastery, from the entrance to the chapel, have details of illustrations from the Saint John's Bible. You can see some examples of the artwork contained in the bible here.

We had hoped to experience the prayer labyrinth and the Zen gardens, but the recent fall of more than two feet of snow buried everything. So we enjoyed some walks in the frozen forest. While Friday was a bright, sunny bluebird day, Saturday turned downright frigid, with frost coating the trees, and a light snow whispering down through the trees. It was quiet enough to hear the snow falling.

Critters abound in these woods. We saw all manner of tracks in the snow, but during the day, we saw not so much as a mouse's whiskers.

It was a quiet and refreshing weekend.

You can find a gallery of some of the photos we took over on WritingPlaces.com's Galleries page, under Road Trips 2012.