This year, Redwoods Monastery celebrates the 50th Anniversary of its founding. In a spirit of anticipation and stewardship, we are implementing a Master Plan to upgrade facilities and enhance the quality of hospitality offered to guests to ensure that our unique expession of monastic contemplative life will continue to flourish.
In 2005, under the community's leadership, with the assistance of David Richen, an architect specializing in monastic communities, and in consultation with the monastery's advisory committee, we developed a Master Plan with five major components in two phases.
Phase I's first priority was the new Senior Wing, which opened in June 2008. In addition, the monastery has completed major maintenance and infrastructure improvements with major electrical upgrades, a water system, a new roof on the main building and guest dining, and an updated heating system for the main building.
Phase II will replace and expand the monastery's library. The goal is to provide a reading room and space for over 15,000 volumes, along with a Founders' Room and Archive Room. These two rooms will allow the monastery to display and preserve documents, photos, and other records of our history. The library will also house a workroom, two offices, and a music room.
As our scholastic heart, the library's collection provides a solid foundation in the history of the Cistercian Order and in the growth of monastic spirituality, as well as texts on contemporary theological concerns and psychology. It reflects the development of Trappist-Cistercian life from the 12th to the 21st centuries.
The new library will house historical photos and archives of the community and the papers of our founding Abbess, Myriam Dardenne. The outstanding scholarly collection of Father Roger de Ganck, the community's first chaplain and an internationally recognized scholar and author, will also be safeguarded and available. In the 1950s, Fr. Roger founded the periodical Citeaux, laying a foundation for Cistercian spirituality. The new facility will allow our sisters, some of whom have published scholarly articles, to share this wealth of seminal monastic texts with our guests and with our visiting scholars wo will have access at designated times for browsing, study or meditative reading.
With the successful completion of Phase I of the Master Plan, funding for a new library represents the highest priority of the monastery's campaign. The new library will not only address deficiencies in the current structure, but also expand opportunities for learning and research by integrating information resources within a spacious, well-equipped facility.
We invite you to join our coalition of established friends and new partners, helping to build a library that honors the monastic traditions of the past and celebrates a commitment to lofelong learning and growth for the future.