Visit Community


St. Paul's Monastery is currently open! Visitors are now welcome to visit a Sister. Please call the Monastery ahead of time, so that we can arrange for hospitality. If visiting a Sister in health Care, please contact Laurie Berg at lberg@stpaulsmonastery.org to arrange your visit.

Visit Our Community

As you enter the doors of St. Paul’s Monastery, you step into a centuries-old tradition. We are home to a religious community of Benedictine Sisters and a place for women and men to gather who seek to understand the wisdom the Rule of St. Benedict has for their lives. Pause for a moment as you cross the threshold. Attend to what you hear and see, for the design of the space embodies who we are. Silence, beauty, spaciousness, and light all work together to support the prayer and interactions of Christian community.


Central to this monastery and its daily life is the chapel. All paths lead to it – from the living baptismal font to the hand-crafted altar, from the crown of daylight around the undulating wood ceiling to the soft serenity of the Eucharistic chapel. Each aspect of the chapel calls the heart to prayer. Here, throughout the day, the community gathers for worship in the conviction that everything finds its purpose and meaning only in the presence of God.


As you stand at the threshold and look straight across the Gathering Space, a doorway invites you to step into the courtyard. Its gardens and walkways provide a place for Sisters and guests to catch their breath and open their heart.


The Monastery hosts 6-8 exhibits a year, including the Juried Exhibit each January. For more information, contact Kathy Fleming.


The Library has “stacks” of books, cataloged and ready for your research project, enrichment reading, or just to enjoy a comfortable chair and your favorite writer.


West of the statue of St. Benedict is a grotto that honors Our Lady of Fatima. In this grotto under the trees, you feel comfortable, cozy, and protected from the harsh realities outside. "Grotto" is linguistically rooted in the Greek use of natural caves for religious rituals. The Latin words crypta and grupta, turned into the Italian grotta, which gave us the English grotto. A grotto can be natural or man-made, but either way, it's a small hidden space with cool and inviting features like a comfy floor or round walls. A grotto is a good place to read, write, or just hang out with friends, especially on a hot summer day.


As you return to the Monastery on the paved pathway, you will see a slightly-raised grassy plateau on your right (or South). This is the site of the Monastery’s labyrinth, the design of which is based on the floor labyrinth in France’s 13th Century Chartres Cathedral. A labyrinth is a maze-like structure for an ancient form of meditation that invites the seeker to slow down, to set aside the clamor of daily life, and to follow prayerfully and with deliberate concentration the path it traces. To reach the labyrinth, you will need to leave the paved walkway and walk South across the lawn for a short distance. For more details on The Labyrinth click here.


The guide is written as a pilgrimage. As you use it to learn more about us, you will from time to time find a prayer. This is an invitation to pause for a moment, to let the prayer deepen in your awareness about how space creates an environment for living more purposefully, and to join your prayers to our own. To learn more – click here for the brochure. Call ahead so we are ready to welcome you. Guests are welcome daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Please sign in at the front desk and maintain the quiet, reverential atmosphere as you enjoy the beauty of the public spaces.














Thank you so much for making the world a better place – and for giving God’s love to all those in need of hope and care!

Reneé Valois

May God bless you all for that you do! Let us all pray for a better, more loving, and peaceful world. May all of us live together as a family of brothers and sisters in Christ.

CC Pupek

Our story of knowing the Sisters is probably somewhat similar to all of yours. We came to know Sister Lucia and Sister Jeron when we joined St. Peter’s Parish in North St. Paul back in 1990. Sister Lucia was the music director at the church and Sister Jeron was in the choir. Janis was attracted to the choir and because of her musical background quickly bonded with Sister Lucia. Through the years, Janis has played her cello at Monastery masses and participated in other music-related ministry work with the Sisters. Through Janis’ connection with the Sisters at St. Peter’s, we were introduced to the Monastery and the rest of the Sisters. That connection proved valuable when, a few years later, Janis became very ill with a chronic disease. The hope that the Sisters offered to us was very reassuring, and the knowledge that this whole community of Sisters was praying for Janis’ health gave Janis a level of confidence that things would get better. I don’t think we can overemphasize the power of group prayer—especially group prayer by this group of wonderful people. Prayers together in a monastic community setting are especially powerful. We are convinced that Janis would not be living the life she is today without the prayers of this community. This is such a special place – this corner of Maplewood. In a world full of doubt, conflict, hopelessness, this corner of the world is like an oasis. I don’t know about you, but when we walk into this building we feel a sense of calm and a feeling of genuine goodness. And look at the goodness these Sisters have given us. A school where kids can learn in a Christian setting; a haven for those many children who find themselves in crisis domestic situations; a place for those in need of affordable housing; and a center that offers safe and convenient child care.

Mike and Janis Nash

Your prayers are of more value than any of us realize.

Jerome Miller

Sister Mary Lou Dummer: You know how very important our family is to us – and we so appreciate your prayers for them.

Jerome and Barbara Bovy

Sister Karen Sames: thanks cousin, for hearing his call and answering it. You do so many unnoticed great works that I forget sometimes how many people you help with all the work and prayers. My family feels blessed from being part of your life, especially Stephanie.

Debbi Gosse

I have much to be thankful for, being introduced to your Monastery and Sisters when I came for a Ministry of Mothers Sharing leadership training. I so loved the atmosphere: your peacefulness, hospitality and your chanting of the hours. I still hum the melody of that week when I pray mine every day. I would love to get back and see your new surroundings. I pray for all of you every day. Sister Paula, I love you!

Bonnie Chester

I left St. Paul in 1963 to serve in the Fargo Diocese until returning here in 1995. It was within a few months that I became a member of a priests’ support group that enjoyed your hospitality for its meeting place and continues to do so. In those days, we met in time for dinner with you and stayed over night in the guest wing. I enjoyed the graceful, curved stairway that took us to the dining room. I think we left after lunch the next day. It was likely at the time you moved to your current monastery that we began to meet at about 3:00 PM, leaving the same evening following our meeting. During my earlier years with you, there was a lay woman on your staff who presented an education seminar periodically, and I enjoyed being a part of her sessions as well. The affordable housing project on land adjoining the former priory, as well as the fine service for women in the former priory building, speak highly of your commitment to social justice. I think it was shortly after moving to St. Pascal’s as pastor in 2009 that I began to have the privilege of presiding at your weekday Masses periodically and frequently staying for lunch or dinner. Being with you on a more casual basis has led me to realize that you served in a number of K-12 teaching positions, several worked as nurses, and some on parish staffs in a variety of positions. Thank you for the pleasure of feeling a part of your community and the apostolic mission you serve.

Father Dave McCauley

I’d like to offer a short testimonial about how the Sisters of St. Benedict at St. Paul’s Monastery in St. Paul, MN have both affected me personally and how they have had an impact on the broader church. It has been my privilege to celebrate Mass with the Sisters once a month for the past few years. I am always struck by the beauty of the Liturgy: the prayerful attention the Sisters bring to the celebration, the excellence of the music choices, the nobility of the architectural space in which they worship, and the honest artistry of the things used in the liturgy (e.g., the vestments and vessels). In a very hectic world, it is deeply nourishing for me to be able to find spaces for stillness and unforced prayer such as those I have found at the Monastery. It has also been my privilege to do some educational/spiritual programs for interested individuals attracted by the Monastery’s reputation as a center for spiritual growth; the Sisters have always been exemplary in their welcome to spiritual seekers. They truly embody the Benedictine value that “all guests are to be received as Christ.” I’d also like to point to two areas in which the Community has had incredible impact on the wider church and world. For years they were involved in the religious education of young people attending what is now Hill-Murray High School. In fact, the land on which Hill-Murray presently stands originally was in the Sisters’ care and they continue to support Catholic education there. Some years ago, in an act of truly prophetic foresight, the sisters chose to “downsize” from their earlier monastery, building a new one on the same property more suited to their present numbers. Rather than demolishing their earlier building, they have partnered with a variety of social service groups to provide excellent housing on their property for women and children at risk of homelessness, transforming both the earlier monastery building and erecting many new homes on the site. I pray that the sisters of St. Paul’s Monastery continue to offer their witness of daily prayer, deep love of the scriptures, and outreach in loving service to the wider world for many years to come!

Father Jan Michael Joncas

I have known the Benedictine Sister of St. Paul’s Monastery since the 1970’s when I first began my ministry as weekend chaplain. And although that service was discontinuous over the years, I have remained close to this community. Working as I have over the years in the Medical School at the University of Minnesota this community of Sisters has been my Benedictine home away from home. One of the most important values that they have provided by their life in the Monastery is stability – a sign and symbol of being a place of the Lord’s service. This sense of place that they project is a constant reminder to me of our Benedictine call to prayer and work and neither is to exceed the other in a well-balanced and equitable life. Their sense of hospitality invites all to come and share in whatever capacity possible in this rich synthesis. In this way, the visitor or friend who cannot live within the Monastery walls can take with them the experience that they have shared with the Sisters and allow it to continue to influence their life apart from the Monastery. They provide a spiritually nourishing and sustaining monastic peace that becomes their gift to the community at large.

Father Cyprian Weaver




The Rule of St. Benedict serves as an invitation to open our hearts to God. It summons us to recognize our responsibility in the world and the proper use of resources. Above all, the Rule reminds us of the fundamental value of living our lives in search and service of God, preferring nothing to the love of Christ.