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Christ of the Desert Monastary, Abiquiu

4.7
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Religious Site Tourist Spot
The Monastery of Christ in the Desert is a Roman Catholic Benedictine monastery belonging to the English Province of the Subiaco Congregation of Benedictine monasteries.The monastery is in Abiquiu, New Mexico, surrounded by miles of undisturbed wilderness amidst the Chama River Canyon Wilderness area 75 miles north of Santa Fe. It is accessible by Forest Road 151, a 13 mile dirt road off of US route 84.The monastery was founded in 1964 by Aelred Wall, O.S.B., a monk of Mount Savior Monastery in Pine City, New York.The original monastery was designed by George Nakashima, the famous architect and woodworker. The chapel is renowned for its beauty and was praised by Thomas Merton as the most perfect monastic chapel he had ever visited.Christ in the Desert follows the Benedictine life without an external apostolate. It has a guesthouse in which men and women can stay and join the monks in the chapel to share in the monastic Divine Office and in the Mass.In addition to maintaining the guesthouse, the monks manage a gift shop of books and religious items, which is accessible online and by mail order. The monks also work in agriculture, crafts, computer work and maintenance of the grounds and facilities.Christ in the Desert has three dependent monasteries. In Mexico, La Soledad near San Miguel de Allende, and St. Mary and All the Saints, in Xalapa. In Chicago USA, Holy Cross Monastery. These monasteries also observe the Benedictine life with no apostolate other than a guesthouse.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
85 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • A most peaceful and spiritual place. The chapel facilitates thoughtful contemplation and mindfulness. We are not Catholic, but felt the Spirit here. Getting there via the 13-mile well-graded gravel fo...  more »
  • 13 miles down a dirt road. Don't know if I'd ever go back. Just too far unless you are into praying and singing.  more »
  • I have been here multiple times and will continue to return when time permits. Inspiring, religious where you are welcomed with graciousness. The men who work and live here as monks are holy, friendly...  more »
Google
  • This is a great place to get away. The accommodations are simple but comfortable. the brothers are friendly and helpful. The scenery is spectacular. A great place to get away.
  • Thomas Merton found refuge within this hallowed land. Jesus sought to find himself within the quiet places of the desert. Who shall come here shall find the same. The thirteen mile road to this spectacularly modest monastery thrills the senses as it climbs up and down and meanders along the edge of the Rio Grande through some of the most vibrant colors of rock formations the imagination could muster. I have been making a regular pilgrimage to this sanctuary since the late 80's and every visit fills me with the same sense of wonder. Surrounded by the colors of O'Keefe this mystical place shall salvage the soul of believer and none believer alike. One cannot help but know there is a God when one has traveled and visited this tiny diamond in the desert...or emerald may better describe as is seems to rest within a small oasis of green..
  • The whole place at the area of Abiquiu NM is beautifully enchanted. The monastery give the place a delightful touch. Time inside the monastery time standstill, it prolong your existence. Your "ego" better be ready.
  • Amazing.
  • i dun like it

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