September 1st through the 3rd, 2023 – The community welcomed 11 men to our annual Labor Day “Come and See” weekend.

The men attending were here to see monastic life in the Cistercian tradition up close, as they explore what God is calling them to in life. They came from many different backgrounds and many parts of the country. While they were here, they sang in choir with the monks and followed a schedule during which they toured the monastery and had several monks speak to them about the monastic life here at Gethsemani.

One of the highlights of their visit Saturday afternoon, which they spent with those in formation and several other monks up at the hermitage. They shared their stories of conversion and spiritual searching with each other. They also tested some of the monastery’s products, the fudge and fruitcake!

On Sunday, they attended our regular community chapter meeting. The abbot gave a talk relating to God’s call to vocation and met with them afterward, and posed with them for a picture, which you will see below.

Of course it would be lovely if some of them returned to Gethsemani at some point in their lives, but even if they don’t, we hope that they carry some of the spirit of the place with them as they continue their discernment.