For the longest time, every time I was driving on the highway, I would see the tourist signs showing the way for the Saint Benedict Abbey. Every time I saw these signs, I would make a mental note to look the place up whenever I had the chance and it always seemed to slip my mind. When I finally got around to researching what this place was and what it was all about, I was so stunned to see how beautiful the architecture of this abbey was and how close it was to where I live. So on an overly too hot day in September I made my way to the Saint Benedict Abbey and so I’ll be sharing with you today some of the photos that I took while I was here and also a bit of information about the place so that you can plan your own trip here as well.
Overlooking the majestic Memphremagog lake, the abbey was built in 1912 by Benedictine monks who came from France and can be found in the small town of St Benoit du Lac. The monastery was constructed using granite and multi colored bricks and bears lots of natural geometric forms in it’s design. You can see the magnificent architecture not only on the outside of the building but also throughout the hallways and rooms inside the abbey. The abbey is completely free of charge to explore on your own but there is a fee if you would like a guided tour which will explore different parts of the abbey that are otherwise closed off to the general public.
The Saint Benedict Abbey was built to house monks and to give them a place to not only live but to work and to further their relationship with God. The monks living at the abbey devote their entire lives to God and to their religion. They live their lives focused on finding God and prayer as well as a balance of study, physical work, and pastoral duties.
Aside from exploring the abbey and learning about the way of life of the monks living here, there are also a few other activities for guests to enjoy. Some of these include apple picking, visiting the gift shop, as well as retreats and hiking trails. The gift shop that can be found at the abbey has a plethora of different items to buy that range from religious gifts, postcards, books, cheeses, and apple products. All the cheeses and the apple products such as apple sauce and apple jelly, are made by hand by the monks. The apples used in the products are also harvested by the monks from the on site apple orchard.
Be sure to visit the Saint Benedict Abbey website to plan your own visit or for more information.