On Holy Thursday it is the tradition of the Mepkin Community to have the Mandatum — the washing of the feet (some prefer only to have their hands washed) — at our main meal, rather than at the Eucharist. The Abbot and the Council then serve the solemn and joyous meal to all our guests, employees, retreatants and the community. Let us continue to serve one another and so fulfill the mandatum, the commandment of the Lord Jesus to love one another as he has loved us.
Even as a boy, Father Guerric Heckel felt the nostalgic love and holy essence of the Nativity scenes his family displayed in their fireplace, when it wasn’t in use, of course.
So when the priest-turned-monk became manager of Mepkin Abbey’s store, he thought it fitting that the Trappist monastery be a destination point for people seeking handmade manger scenes. So he placed an order for several thousand, and the abbey’s hugely successful annual creche festival was born.Read More »
This op ed piece was written by Abbot Stan and appeared in the Sun, Feb. 2 edition of The Post & Courier.
The Brothers at Mepkin Abbey have followed the discussion about the fate of Cainhoy Plantation over the past three months. We are hopeful that a positive outcome can be achieved for this important property, and with that in mind offer a message of patience and hope.
Mepkin Abbey, a Trappist monastery at the confluence of the two forks of the Cooper River, played a role in the conservation of the historic Cooper River corridor. Mepkin was originally the estate of several historic families including Sir John Colleton, Henry Laurens, and thereafter the well-known publisher, Henry Luce. In 1949, the Luces donated a large portion of the property to the Trappist Order. It was then that we accepted the hallowed role of stewards of Mepkin, a place we believe to be set in one of the most beautiful and sacred landscapes in America.
Our goal has been to respect the historic and ecological integrity of the property and be good members of the Cooper River community. Leading a monastic life, traditionally our community involvement is of the quiet kind.Read More »
A 15-piece, hammered-copper Nativity on loan from the renowned Mepkin Abbey in South Carolina; a set from Laos showing the Holy Family inside a Hmong home with the newborn baby lying in a straw basket suspended from rafters; crèches crafted with native materials like birch bark, woven grass and recycled newspaper; and an elaborate traditional Italian Presepio — these unique pieces are part of an extraordinary array of Nativity sets.Read More »
David Kearney who is discerning a call to enter Mepkin has been staying with us for three months as an observer. From Ohio, Dave had come on retreat to Mepkin in the past and initiated a conversation to explore the possibility that God might be inviting him to become a Trappist.Read More »
Associated Press — The daily cycle of work, worship and contemplation at Mepkin Abbey still follows the simple pattern that Trappist monks have observed for a thousand years. But in recent months there have been some changes at the South Carolina monastery near Charleston.Read More »
The Post and Courier — It’s a cool and cloudy day at Mepkin Abbey, the kind that speaks of silence, save the occasional rumble of a car passing a small sign to the monastery’s new retreat center.
From the beginning, the monks have welcomed guests to the abbey’s enchanting 3,000 acres of preserved woodland that grace the Cooper River banks near Moncks Corner. After all, what is a monastery without hospitality?Read More »
The Catholic Miscellany — The monks at Mepkin Abbey broke briefly from their quiet monastic lifestyle to celebrate their new St. Francis Retreat Center and the Father Francis Kline Memorial Chapel. The Aug. 25 dedication included a Mass, musical performance and choirs.Read More »
MEPKIN ABBEY—The monks of Mepkin Abbey want people entering the second stage of life to open their eyes and see aging as a period of growth instead of decline.
To that end, Trappist Father Guerric Heckel was instrumental in creating a series of lectures and retreats that focus on the self development and spiritual growth of senior citizens.Read More »
The Berkeley Independent — He eases down a narrow walkway between 60 columns of oyster mushrooms that hang like fragile punching bags.
In his square-shaped glasses, trucker hat and blue-collar jumpsuit, he may not look like it, but Brother John Corrigan is a monk . . . and a farmer, a business manager, and Mepkin Abbey’s mushroom-growing expert.
Later he will don his monk vestment – a white and brown robe with a hood – and enter the chapel for Noon prayer.
But not before a morning’s worth of work in one of eight former tractor-trailer containers that grow oyster mushrooms, and a hangar-shaped building where rows of shiitake mushrooms grow on shelves.
The monks and other monastic guests must work to cover their daily expenses, according to Mepkin Abbey Communications Director Mary Jeffcoat.Read More »
Jim Rozier says it is the best deal around. Rozier, the former Berkeley County Supervisor, is talking about the columbarium at Mepkin Abbey, which sits peacefully along a gravel walkway with an oak-tree lined grassy knoll on one side and sweet grass plants on the other.
Since the monks are often busy and have little contact with the outside world, Rozier oversees columbarium activity. He has been involved with the Mepkin community since he was a child. “The goal is for the columbarium to blend in and become part of Mepkin,” Rozier said.Read More »