Bonzey Award

Innkeepers Sister Corinne and Sister Chanelle receive the award plaque.

On May 3, in Moscow, Idaho, the Inn at St. Gertrude’s innkeepers won the Idaho B&B Association Bonzey Award for “The Inn-spirational Innkeeper of the Year.” The award is shared with other recipients Roley and Janice Schooner of Western Pleasure Guest Ranch in Sandpoint, Idaho.

The Inn opened in 2010 as an expression of the community’s core values: Healing Hospitality, Grateful Simplicity, and Creative Peacemaking.

“It’s pretty unbelievable,” said Innkeeper Sister Corinne Forsman. “The great reward that you get as an innkeeper is basically experiencing the goodness of people that visit us and their gratitude for our place. They bring new ways of realizing what a beautiful place we have.”
“It was wonderful,” added Innkeeper Sister Chanelle Schuler. “It was nice to be honored because there are so many people that do so such great things. My favorite part of being an innkeeper is meeting all the wonderful, interesting people. That is what is ‘inn-spirational’…the inspiring people sharing their stories, a wonderful gift!”
Inn Dedication

Inn Dedication Day, 2010

Inspiration to begin the Inn at St. Gertrude came early when Father John Robbins gave the community $25,000 to create the Inn. Then with the design help of Oblates Regina Sullivan and Lisa Radakovich and other volunteers, staff and community members, the lower level of the hospitality house was converted into a bed & breakfast. “They were all the inspiration behind getting us started,” said Sister Chanelle, “with just us [the sisters] it never would have happened. There is a whole debt of gratitude that we owe to all the people that helped get us started and help keep us going.”

Innkeepers Sister Corinne Forsman and Sister Chanelle Schuler both draw on rich backgrounds in healthcare and human services as well as long histories of living the Benedictine tradition. They are joined in sharing Benedictine hospitality by volunteers Oblate Peg and Grant Griffin, and Frank Halter. All three volunteers are retired. Frank is from California and has been volunteering at the monastery since 2012. “You never know when a learning experience will come up – and I have had lots of those here.” he says.

Inn Team

The Inn’s Hospitality Team (left to right): Sister Chanelle Schuler, Grant Griffin, Oblate Peg Griffin, Frank Halter, Sister Corinne Forsman.

To be closer to the Monastery, Peg and Grant Griffin recently moved to nearby Grangeville from the south Puget Sound area. “It’s a joy to help people have the most restful and sweet experience that they can,” says Peg. “All the people we meet are just fantastic. Many of them who live in urban areas arrive so physically clenched and leave with such a spirit of calm. You realize what a life-giving place this is.”

The Inn at St. Gertrude was also recognized by Trip Advisor for its consistently high guest reviews with a Bravo Badge that is displayed on the website. More recently, the Inn at St. Gertrude was named a 2015 TripAdvisor Service Excellence Winner.

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