There is a monastic guesthouse here both on the side of the brothers and on that of the sisters, because people don’t simply come here for a vacation. So what are people looking for here? It is the “people” who have to answer that! The “people” are our families and friends who come to discover the land, and those who have heard about our vocation in this Land that is called Holy (we have to listen carefully to what that means to each person!), and then there are young people who want some time for a life that is structured by the monastic rhythm and breath, and who really want to “hear” what happens here.
There are people among them who have been in this Land for some time and who will continue to be here for a while to study or to serve in the various Christian institutions. And of course the clergy and religious who are always welcome in our house. All need to “take a breath”, so they need a space for a retreat and they need to retreat. The monasteries are this place. But people only find there what is already there. So what do they find? A community that welcomes you. In its prayer, so in its silence. However, times to speak are not lacking here! Everything has to have its place.
The community is not a travel agent, not a country house, and we do not organize preached retreats here. However, we are always very happy to bring you our experience (for your discovery of the land), simply to welcome you, and even to listen to you (or to accompany those who ask this for the sake of deepened reflection). All this finds its place in the community prayer during the Office, in the daily monastic life: meals in silence in the monastic refectory or in the guesthouse, according to the situation; and sometimes the one or other person wants to join in the work in the garden or elsewhere.
You will meet pilgrims here, tourists, and our friends, Israelis and Palestinians. Each person is free to feel at home – to the extent to which he or she knows that they are welcomed by the community which witnesses to an Other who preceded us on the roads of the Holy Land. Thus each person will be free to hear the One who walks in our footsteps in order to bring us back to Jerusalem, for “In her are all our springs” (Psalm 86).