See a Historic Aspen Colorado Monastery before it Goes Away
It may come as a surprise to you that there's a historic monastery just outside of the famous ski town of Aspen, Colorado. The monastery has been around and active since 1956 but that may soon change as it has been announced that there are plans in place for it to close.
Keep scrolling to learn about the monastery, what's going on with it, and take a virtual tour of the sacred landmark before it closes its doors for good.
Historic Monastery Outside of Aspen Colorado
Back in 1956, it was announced that a group of monks known as Cistercian Monks of the Strict Observance, also known as Trappist, had purchased 3,000 acres of land outside of Aspen with plans to build a Catholic monastery.
The monks came from St. Joseph's Abbey in Massachusetts and followed the fundamental teachings of St. Benedict who ruled back in the sixth century A.D. Because of this, the monastery was given the name St. Benedict's.
While the monks weren't ranchers at the time, much of the land purchased was intended for raising cattle so they hired one of the former landowners by the name of Gordon LaMoy to teach them how to raise the 343 heads of cattle they'd inherited with the land.
Over the years, the monks made money running the ranch, selling eggs, cookies, and books, until 1995 when they invited groups to come to stay at the monastery for retreats.
However, the monastery's long legacy may be coming to an end soon.
What's Going to Happen to Colorado's St. Benedict's Monastery?
It was recently announced that the monks that operate the monastery have plans to shut down shop.
Dom Damian Carr of the monastery issued the following statement:
As many of you know, our monastic community has diminished significantly over the past 10 years. Recently two of our brothers returned to our founding Mother House in Spencer, MA. As a community, we have been discerning with the leadership of our Order how to move forward in our discernment process. We have decided that as of June 30th of this year, we will no longer be accepting retreat reservations in our guest facilities. This will enable the brothers to carefully focus their time and energy, personally and communally, on the needed next steps in our closure process.
It has been speculated that the reason for the closure has to do with the fact that all of the monks are in advanced age and have had trouble recruiting new, younger monks to take over for them.
It doesn't appear that the property is for sale just yet, but you can take a virtual tour of the beautiful area in which the monastery has operated for all these years below: