The Monastery Experience

Recently at Watershed we attempted to cultivate a unique worship experience, specifically for Lent.

We called it ‘The Monastery  Experience’, making use of the old, late-1800’s space recently restored in the Village at Grand Traverse Commons – our collective home as a faith community.  In the brick-lined hallways and arches, it was easy to imagine ourselves in a monastery in ancient times.

Various stations were set up at which one was able to stop and have a contemplative worship experience.  A nice group of people attended, from our own community and beyond.  Young, old, and in-between walked the halls and spent time worshiping, reflecting, absorbing.  In the background we had chant playing from Benedictine and Gregorian monks.  As it echoed through the halls we were truly transported to another place.

There will be a page for each station on this site, and you are invited to experience this powerful event for yourself.

LENT:  the monastery experience

Enter here

Lent is about making space for God.  This morning, we have created a monastery-like setting in which you are invited to consider the ways you can empty yourself, and create more space for God.

There are eight stations setup in the lower mercato area.  Imagine you are entering a monastery.  Act with the reverence you would have on such an occasion.

Some stations will work best by yourself, others will work better in a group.

Instructions will be provided at each station.  You may want to experience each station, or a few, or some more than once.  Don’t worry about rushing from one to the next – be present in each space.  You may start at the end, and work forward, or the front and move back, or in any order you choose.  When you are finished with a station, quietly move to the next.

Here is an overview, with links to each station:

STATION:  WATER — seeking release
Works best individually

STATION:  FIRE — illumination, heat, warmth
Works best individually

STATION:  TREE — seeking fruit and life
Works best individually

STATION:  VOX — voices that bring life
Works best in groups of four or more

STATION: TABLE — take, eat, remember, believe
Individual or groups

STATION:  GROOVE — breaking out of ruts
Works best individually

STATION:  STILL — quiet, empty, silent
Individual or groups

STATION:  LECTIO — sacred reading
Works best in groups of four or more

» First Station: WATER

Thanks to Angela Josephine for collaboration on this great event, and to the Minervini Group for providing use of the space!

If you had a chance to participate in this – would love to hear what you thought of it!  Or if you missed it and have some thoughts —

Please post your comments below!


4 thoughts on “The Monastery Experience

  1. It looks like a ritual , I always thought, churches need to restore. I’d like to make and attend something like that here in Korea.


  2. I am thankful that you invited me. I have been a little anxious lately with my circumstances and advancing age. Nothing serious but I can over react. The Monastery Experience brought me a great deal of peace. I was able to focus on God, his love and the blessing he has brought to my life. It was the start of a day of refocusing and letting go. thank you.


  3. “Come away…” God calling… We have a choice to respond. So glad that I responded this morning, allowing myself to be moved, torn, healed, renewed.
    God is so good, so kind, ever seeking after us, welcoming us, welcoming me.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s