In the days after Christmas, two groups from the North Street Community of Durham, NC visited the retreat center at Mepkin. They participated with the monks in all the various services.
The members of the Mepkin Future Committee met with both groups. On the second meeting, the members of the North Street Community entertained the brothers with some of the songs which they had written inspired by Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint Thérèse of Liseux. They shared about the growth of Reality Ministries, which is now ten years old. This has developed out of a young life group. It started with a core group of friends, people with and without disabilities coming together to form a relationship, and they now have two friendship houses. This gives an opportunity for people with disabilities to live with university students. The age range is from one and a half years to ninety-five years. They also shared about a café, which started in 2016, where everything served is provided by a local farm. North Street is clearly a story of the heart. The dedication of this largely young group of people is an inspiration. Father Joe, who attended the meeting, said that he wanted Mepkin to be a place where they would always feel welcome and at home. He went on to say that he wanted to explore ways in the future of working more closely together and being in greater collaboration.