Our community is equally contemplative and active. As a monastic vocation we feel God not only calls us into deeper relationship through the contemplative life in the monastery, but that God also calls us to bring that life into the world in a mutually transformative way, especially with those most marginalized and in particular, those in prison. Our monastic life of prayer and contemplation informs everything we do in ministry. Given the complexity of the human conditions of suffering and grace that we encounter in ministry with the incarcerated, it is essential to our spiritual well-being to have a stable monastic community where we can return to and be held in love and prayer.
In the monastery
We pray the Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) four times daily. The Divine Office includes Lauds, Sext, Vespers and Compline. We celebrate the Holy Eucharist each Friday. All people are welcome to join us in prayer and worship. Our daily life is framed in Ora et Labora – or to “Pray and Work.” Our work could include tending to the structural needs and operation of the monastery as well as working on ministry projects that require our attention. Another added element is that of Study which is important to our intellectual development as monks. Silence is an essential element of the monastic way of life and in addition to prescribed times of absolute and extended silence, we also strive to observe quiet in all our activities as a way to foster stillness within the heart that is needed to truly listen to God. This is not to say that we ignore the need for joyful activities together at times as a way to honor balance and as a way to relax the monastic tension. We are not a glum lot!
In the Jails
Each of the monks spend three or four days each week in ministry with the incarcerated in the Los Angeles County Jails. We offer individual spiritual care and companionship; Weekly Bible Study and Spiritual Formation Classes, and numerous worship services in the form of The Holy Eucharist on Sundays as well as some weekday services. Our extended ministry also includes court appearances with family members and ongoing written correspondence with inmates should they leave for prison.
Social and Criminal Justice
We advocate for social and criminal justice concerns by taking a prophetic stance against mass incarceration, the death penalty, racism, all forms of violence against humanity – particularly domestic violence and gun violence. We stand in solidarity with our LGBTQ sisters and brothers and with all spiritual traditions seeking God, truth, and justice. We understand the value of our activism always being informed by our contemplative intuition.