Exploring the Benedictine Way
New Ways to Be Monastic
At the Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude, sharing the Benedictine charism is a way of life: seeking God in community. This means all aspects of each person’s life flows from this commitment to Benedictine spirituality. The commitment is to values and practices of prayer, community, service, hospitality as a way of transforming the self and the world.
Vowed Benedictine Sisters partner with lay people to explore new ways to enable people to live Benedictine spirituality. Programs have been established help people explore and live Benedictine life apart from traditional, professed monastic life.
Some of these programs include:
The Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude offers many opportunities to our volunteers to serve in our monastic community. St. Gertrude’s invites monastery volunteers to live within our spiritual community, assist on a regular basis with ministry tasks and community support, or help with special, monastic community projects.
Oblates are men and women, married or single, active in any Christian denomination, who closely associate themselves with the Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude through an initiation process and formal oblation (promise). There are nearly 100 oblates living throughout the Pacific Northwest.
Oblates take an active participatory role in areas such as the annual Raspberry Social, monastery committees, and retreat ministry. Oblates also volunteer where needed – the kitchen, garden, museum, library, monastery offices, and during liturgies.
Artist in residence
The Artist in Residence program at St. Gertrude is a month-long opportunity for women visual artists, musicians, and writers to spend time with their practices in a monastic setting at the Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude, Cottonwood, Idaho. It is an opportunity to live in the monastery, joining the community in meals and other aspects of community life. Studio space is provided and the residency should conclude with an informal presentation to the monastic community of the work completed. All meals are provided, as well as a private room with a private bathroom. There is no fee to apply or participate.
living as a monk in everyday life: a benedictine spirituality cohort
Explore how the Benedictine monastic life can be lived by ordinary people seeking God in their everyday lives. This nine-month cohort program begins with a retreat, followed by nine months of intensive remote instruction and a concluding retreat.
Over the last several years, a number of volunteers, oblates and employees have intentionally moved to the local area around St. Gertrude’s in order to be closer to the Center for Benedictine Life and to live, work or volunteer at the monastery. The group gathers several times a year for fellowship and formation in Benedictine values and practices.
Benedictine Cohousing Companions
The Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude is pioneering a new way for women to live Benedictine, monastic life outside of the traditional requirements of Roman Catholic religious life. The emerging community of the Benedictine Cohousing Companions (BCC) offers women the chance to create a new form of monastic community in the midst of an existing women’s monastery.
Our employees are extremely dedicated to our mission and find the monastery an excellent place to work. The Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude considers the employees an integral part of the broader monastic community. Come, join us!