Learning Christ - A Prayer for Lent

Teach me, my Lord, to be gentle
In all the events of life -
in all the disappointments,
in the thoughtlessness of others,
in the insincerity of those I trusted,
in the unfaithfulness of those on whom I relied.

Let me put myself aside,
to think of the happiness of others,
to hide my little pains and heartaches,
so that I may be the only one to suffer from them.

Teach me to profit by the suffering that
comes across my path.

Let me so use it that it may mellow me,
not harden nor embitter me;
that it may make me patient, not irritable,
that it may make me broad in my
forgiveness, not narrow, haughty and overbearing.

   May no one be less good for having come within my influence.
No one less pure, less true, less kind, less noble for having been
a fellow-traveler in our journey toward ETERNAL LIFE.

   As I go my rounds from one distraction to another, 
let me whisper from time to time, a word of love to thee.
May my life be lived in the super-natural, full of

power for good, and strong in its purpose of sanctity.

(source unknown)


Monastic Experience Weekends for Young Women

February 11-14, 2016 
September 1-4, 2016

This is an opportunity to listen deeply for God's voice as you experience the richness of monastic life: silence, the beauty of nature, private and communal prayer, and meditation. Sisters will be available to guide discernment.

The schedule includes participation in the monastic hours of prayer, Eucharist, and meditation with the sisters in the monastic choir. There will be conferences on prayer and monastic spirituality as well as time for hikes in our old growth redwood forests as weather and time permit. Meals will be taken with the sisters and lodging is in the Guest House. Some time for manual labor may also be included.

Click here to download a schedule of the event

Find out about upcoming weekends - contact Sr. Suzanne, vocationdirector@redwoodsabbey.org


Fall Newsletter 2015

Sr. Kathy DeVico, Abbess, Redwoods Monastery
This Fall we featured Pope Francis' Encyclical, Laudato Si, in our newsletter.  It is timely because as you may know today the world has taken a united stand to address climate change in the Paris Agreement.  Many across the globe have been praying for this accord. The Global Catholic Climate Movement is one such organization that organized hours of prayers that visitors to the website could sign up for.  I think it is no small coincidence that this historic agreement happened on the Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe who is the protector of all the poor.

Click here to read the comments and reactions to Laudato Si by the sisters and guests of Redwoods Abbey as we celebrate the Paris Agreement.

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Following the Monastic Path at Redwoods Monastery

The following article appeared in the Santa Rosa Diocese publication North Coast Catholic

There is a walking trail on the monastery’s property that winds along the bank of the Mattole River – up and down gentle ravines and through running creeks.  The river bank is fortified by the roots of giant redwoods and the water is crystal clear.  Occasionally we see fish – large steelhead and baby salmon – along with eels, ducks and river otter.  Then the trail swerves away from the river and enters an ancient grove of redwoods.  Some giants have fallen and are decomposing on the mountainside while new redwoods grow from out of old stumps.  Everywhere there are signs of regeneration – rebirth – and renewal.  Hope.  The Easter Mystery reflected in the very earth we live on.

Over 50 years ago, a group of sisters from the Cistercian Monastery of Nazareth in Brecht Belgium, left their homeland, their families, and monastery to travel to an unknown and rugged wilderness in the Lost Coast area of Southern Humboldt County California.  Most did not speak English or have any experience of American culture.  They were cloistered contemplatives nuns who embarked on their pioneer journey the very day Vatican II began.   The spirit of the Council marked the foundation of Redwoods Monastery with an eagerness and energy to adapt the Cistercian charism to yet another culture and age, while always maintaining fidelity to our Benedictine Cistercian heritage.

Today hospitality to guests is an important ministry of our monastery.  We run a guesthouse open during the summer months for weekend and weeklong retreats.  In outreach to young people, Redwoods hosts an immersion experience for Santa Clara University students interested to learn more about our spirituality and life.  In addition to this, we offer a weekend especially geared for young women seeking vocational discernment and an introduction to contemplative prayer.  It is held in Summer every year.  Contact Sr Suzanne at vocationdirector@redwoodsabbbey.orgfor more information.

Our life is a pattern of prayer, study, meditation, and manual labor that is woven into the fabric of community, centered on Christ as our Lord and brother.  We meet Him daily in the Eucharist, in lectio divina, and the “everydayness” of our monastic vocation.  Whether it is working at honey, tending the vegetable garden, cleaning the guest house, or cooking dinner, we strive to do all with a mindfulness that “the divine presence is everywhere.” (Rule of St Benedict Chapter 19:1).

In order to earn our livelihood, we produce creamed honey in 7 flavors: Original, Almond, Anise, Cinnamon, Ginger, Lemon and Orange.  Jars and Gift Boxes are available on our website, www.redwoodsabbey.org , and in many local stores and co-ops.  Cards, icon prints and other handiworks made by the sisters are available in our monastery with some items featured online.

If you would like to find out more about our life or purchase Monastery Creamed Honey, please visit www.redwoodsabbey.org. 
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