Monks go modern in state of the art monastery
It’s been 10 years since Trappist monks moved to the Val-Notre-Dame Monastery from their longtime Oka home and they’re showing that more has changed than location when it comes to monk life.
After living in Oka for more than 125 years, the monks moved in 2009. Their old home was built for over 200 inhabitants, but there were fewer than 30 living there when they decided to sell.
“It’s much better for us, Oka was too big,” said Dom Andre, the monastery’s abbott.
The new monastery is state of the art and eco-friendly, with roof covered in glass during the summer, complete with water-recovery system.
Sixty architects submitted designs for the $9 million structure, with finalists having to live a day like monks to truly understand the needs.
The building is surrounded by nature, with many monks saying it makes them feel closer to God.
“God is in nature, God is the creator of everything,” said Dom Andre. “So, to have all this beautiful nature all around us, I think it helps us to pray.”