Our main retreat house is Bethlehem a short walk down the road from the Abbey. It is surrounded by ample grounds with paths for walking through the fields and along the Genesee River. Bethlehem is ideal for individual, private retreats though it can be used for groups. All together, Bethlehem accomodates sixteen people, each with a private room.
The house is over one hundred years old, and was probably a hotel back in the days of the Genesee Valley Canal that ran nearby. It was the first monastery for the founders of our community in 1951 when they arrived in the Genesee Valley.
The first floor contains a chapel, a Speaking Room, a library, five bedrooms, guestmaster's and retreat house manager's offices, bathrooms with showers, dining room and kitchen. Eleven bedrooms and a bathroom are on the second floor.
All bedrooms are equipped with a single bed, desk and two chairs. Towels, blankets and linens are provided. Retreatants need to provide their own toiletries: soap, shampoo, toothpaste, etc. Hiking or waterproof shoes are recommended for those who plan to walk to the abbey or to use the farm roads and Genesee Valley Greenway.
Dinner and supper are prepared and taken together. Breakfast is pickup and taken individually. Persons requiring a special diet should bring their own food supplies. Silence is observed at all meals as well as throughout the house, except in the Speaking Room. Conference talks are given by one of the monks in the library though attendance is optional. A monk is also available for private talks.
Arrivals & Departures
Guests arriving are asked to check in after 2:00pm, unless they are arriving by bus, train, or plane. Guests departing Monday through Saturday are asked to check out by 9:00am. Guests departing on Sundays are asked to check out by 2:00pm.
No Pets Please. In consideration of those coming after you suffering from allergies no pets are allowed at any of our guest houses.
For Travel Information see our directions and travel page.