I find the Trappist life very appealing. I’m too old and have too many loose ends to consider discerning entering religious life now. Do have you have oblates?


God bless you, thank you for contacting us at Trappist.org! You asked about opportunities as an oblate. The answer depends on what you mean by ‘Oblate‘. One meaning is what we would call a ‘family sister/brother’, a person who lives in the monastery and takes part in the daily life of the community, but without actually taking religious vows. This would be a rare exception today.

More commonly an Oblate is something like a Third Order for lay persons who are inspired by the spirituality of a religious order and strive to live out that charism in their own lives and circumstances: for instance, Third Order Franciscans, Benedictine Oblates, Secular Carmelites, etc.

Lay people who are associated with our Trappist-Cistercian monasteries are called Lay Cistercians. These are lay people who feel an affinity for our Cistercian spirituality, charism and patrimony and try to live it out in the context of their lives in the world, with the support of like minded persons and with the supervision and in association with one of the monasteries of our Order. Most Lay Cistercian communities meet regularly at or near the monasteries. There are several who have online interactions as part of their community life. Each group has its own procedure for welcoming and forming newcomers.

The International Association of Lay Cistercian Communities has a website on which you can find out a lot of information about our Lay Cistercians and also a list of all the official Lay Cistercian communities throughout the world. If there is a group that is attractive to you, please contact them to learn more about them. Perhaps you could arrange to visit them.
The website is: web site is: http://www.cistercianfamily.org/

I hope this gives you some idea of how to proceed. If I can be of further help, please let me know. I will pray for you today, and appreciate your prayers for us!