This sign marks the entrance to the Benedictine Sisters' Monastery and Gift Shop in Dayton, Wyoming.

 After Mass, the visit to Holy Name School and the ground breaking ceremony for the Habitat for Humanity home, I made my way to Dayton to visit our Benedictine Sisters at San Benito Monastery.  After all, Benedictine Sisters are somewhat like family to this bishop who has both and Aunt and a sister who are Benedictine sisters back in Beech Grove, Indiana.

Monastery Creations is the name of the Gift Shop, one of the primary means by which this small group of nuns support themselves.  So, if you are looking for some great soaps of all varieties, hand and body  lotions, candles salves or religious articles, please visit their website or stop by their shop, they would love to see you!

Dayton is located along the Tongue River, nestled into the foothills of the Bighorn Mountains.  It is a lovely setting, complete with quite a bit of wildlife…a favorite of this bishop, as the readership of this blog knows.

Ms. Karyn Haider, Sr. Marya Grathwold, osf, Sr. Helen Prejean, csj, with Benedictine Sisters Regina, Gladys and Josetta with Bishop Etienne

 I arrived just in time to share lunch with the sisters and their guests.  I enjoyed a dinner and visit last night at the rectory in Sheridan with Sr. Gladys.  It was good to make another visit to our fine, Benedictine Sisters.  Along with their guests, we had quite a delightful conversation.

Because of their location and Benedictine hospitality, the sisters attracted a number of other sisters to their quite monastery.  Perhaps one of the more well known was visiting again this summer, Sr. Helen Prejean, a sister of St. Joseph, and author of the well known book, Dead Man Walking.

Another visitor who took our photo, and is thus not in the photo, is Ms. Denny LeBoeuf.  Denny provides a fair amount of legal assistance and advocacy on behalf of prisoners on death row.  Both Denny and Sr. Helen are doing marvelous work in both ministering to those awaiting execution, as well as advocacy for the abolition of capital punishment. 

I was fascinated by some of their work, as well as some of the statistics regarding what it costs to maintain prisoners on death row.  You can learn more about this important work to abolish the Death Penalty and Catholic Social Teaching by visiting the Catholic Mobilizing Network.


Sr. Regina, Sr. Gladys and Sr. Josetta with Bishop Etienne. (Absent, Sr. Hope)

 Even though my visit with the sisters was just short of two hours, it was enjoyable and informative.  Our Church continues to benefit greatly from the many women religious who pray and work so hard on behalf of all of us, and always with an eye to the underprivileged and under served.  We are blessed to have these Benedictine Sisters at San Benito Monastery.  Please pray for them and for their communities throughout the US.  Please pray as well that God continue to bless them with many new vocations.