Monastic Immersion Experience

What does it mean to be a monk either in the world or in a monastery? To be a monk is to live a way of life focused on God.


Spend a month living monastic life with us. Pray, live, work and celebrate with the sisters. Let the monastic silence speak to your heart this season.  For more information or an application contact Sr. Teresa Jackson using the form at the bottom of this page.


Program 1: Monk for a Month

~ You will participate in monastic prayer, worship, common life with us.

~ Participants receive classes on monastic topics, faith sharing groups and common work.

~ Receive spiritual direction as you enter more deeply into your faith journey.

~ Work in a Monastery department: retreat ministry, bookstore, bed and breakfast, historical museum, gardens and herbal products, marketing and communications and possibly others.

Open to women of all faith backgrounds ages 21+.

Dates are flexible, application, references, interview are required.  We are not able to accommodate everyone who applies.


Program 2: Monastic Immersion Experience for Caregivers

Second FloorThis volunteer program designed to allow a small group of women an experience of life at our monastery and to work with our elder sisters.

Monastic Immersion Experience participants will work as elder caregivers as well as fully participating in the life of the monastery, joining the monastic community for prayer and liturgy, meals, recreation and common chores. Participants will also be offered classes on monastic topics taught by the sisters. Specialized opportunities to learn about faith-based elder care will be emphasized. Volunteers will have the opportunity for small faith sharing groups and spiritual direction. There will also be chances for field trips to experience North Central Idaho.

The program is open to women 21-55 of all faith backgrounds.

An application, references and interview will be required of all applicants. Additionally, each participant will be subject to a 2-week  trial period at the beginning of their stay.

Volunteers will stay in the monastery. Each volunteer will have her own fully furnished bedroom with a sink, closet, desk and easy chair. Bathrooms are shared. The volunteers will also share a volunteer lounge with a common phone, TV, computer with internet access and DVD player. There is wireless access in part of the monastery building. The volunteers will have access to the monastery library. There are extensive grounds and hiking trails.

Do you want to deepen your faith life? Would you like to experience life in a contemporary monastery?  Would you like to explore a career working with elders in a health care or social service field? This program could be the perfect opportunity for you.



Program 3: Artist Residency

artistresidency1We also offer an artist residency that allows visual artists, musicians and writers to spend time with their practices in a monastic setting. You will live in the Monastery, joining the community in meals and other aspects of community life. You will be provided with studio space and your residency should conclude with an informal presentation of your work to the monastic community.

Learn more and request an application here…

(Programs 1 and 2 use the form below.)




Learning from one another 

Women come from as far away as Boston and New York and as close as Clarkston, Washington and Moscow, Idaho to explore the contemporary monastic life.  They are Catholic, Protestant and interfaith, ranging in age from early 20’s to mid-50’s.  Together we learn what it means to live a life focused on God, whether inside or outside a monastery.

The “Monk for a Month” is a program for women to volunteer and experience our way of life for varying periods of time while working in a Monastery department, attending classes on monastic topics, engaging in spiritual direction and sharing our life of work and prayer.  It is a life giving opportunity to grow in faith.

hillsideSisters frequently shared how much they enjoyed the life and energy of the group. The participants express appreciation for the chance to learn more about our way of life. They also reported being surprised at how fun the sisters are (alas, old stereotypes die hard). “It is always a life-changing experience for them and us,” said Sister Teresa, of the membership team. “We are deeply grateful for their presence among us.”

“The sisters at St. Gertrude’s taught me what it means to be Benedictine, to seek God above all else.  They demonstrated St. Benedict’s understanding of living out your relationship with God practically in life through making time for prayer, work, and study. They modeled that there is “no separation of prayer and life.” While I was at St. Gertrude’s I must admit, I deeply experienced a home in which I could live out my relationship with God.”  ~ Miracle Ryder, Monastic Immersion Experience Participant


Monastic Immersion Inquiry

Fill out the form below to request more information about Programs 1 and 2 of the Monastic Immersion Experience programs.

Fields marked with an * are required