My sister-in-law sent me an article about the day-to-day lives of trappist monks who still follow the edict given by St. Benedict of silence. I am fascinated with the monastic life. These men live in community with one another, depending on one another for the continuation of the community along with the development of their spiritual life. They use their silence to devote more attention to the task at hand along. The monks who were interviewed were very frank with their statements on living in the community and the struggles they deal with on a daily basis.
"I can't pretend that I'm always a nice guy, always patient, always calm and receptive. I have to admit that I can be abrupt, cold to offenders, or would often prefer efficiency to the messiness of other people's moods" - Father 'B'
Monastic communities have changed immensely since their began in the third century. These communities offer a look at how individuals can come together with a common goal of deeper spirituality and offer service to the community around them. For those of you are in the Northern Virginia area there is a trappist monastery in Berryville, VA. The Holy Cross Abbey is open to visitors from 3:30am (you read that right) until 8:00pm M-F and again on Sundays.