Monastery of the Benedictine Sisters

29 Jul


South of Portland at the foot of mount Angel we visited Sister Alberta, 93, at the Monastery of the Benedictine Sisters. In our research on communities and alternative ways of living together, we figured that the perspective of a nun would shed an interesting light on what we had experienced so far.

About 70 years ago Sister Alberta decided to dedicate her life to sisterhood, living in commune and carrying out the rule of Benedict. As a child she had no idea that her life would turn out like it did. She had a dream to become a teacher, and to fulfill that dream she went to teacher school at the monastery of the Benedictine Sisters. But the meeting with the sisters inspired her in such a way that after a while she decided to become one of them.

The monastery is a catholic community of 40 women for whom stability, fidelity to the rule of Benedict and obedience are the core values in their lives. Many of the sisters have lived together for more than half a century, and as in the holy marriage they stick together for better and for worse. When hearing Sister Alberta talk about her sisters, the love she felt for them and the strong bond of sisterhood between them was obvious.

Sister Alberta really stroke us as a wise and open minded old woman, and in spite of the obvious differences between her life and ours, she gave us some unique perspectives on living in commune and on the importance of gathering around something greater than yourself.

Click “continue reading” to see more pictures and listen to the audio recording from our visit at the monastery.






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