prayer & discernment
Thirty-three ecuadorian nuns and a monk of Mepkin Abbey taught
Cistercian Brother Dismas Warner that finding a God he cannot see
involves trusting the visible, all-too-human community.
n SePTeMBeR of 2004 our Brother
Laurence made the mistake of parking
the backhoe he was operating on an
incline and climbing out of it. no one saw
it tip over onto him, pinning him to the
ground. But that was how Brother Joseph
found him. Laurence had to be airlifted to
Brother Dismas Warner, O.C.S.O.
entered Mepkin Abbey in January
of 2005. When not playing guitar,
he assists on the monastery’s
fledgling mushroom farm.
the hospital. His blood pressure was too low
for the doctors to give him anesthesia, so
they just asked the emergency room nurses
to hold him down while they opened his
wounds and cleaned them.
Laurence was in the hospital for
months. He was not expected to live, so
when he came home, wheelchair-bound but
breathing, all of the brothers went in to see
him. Father Francis, who, as abbot, was
the spiritual guide and superior of the community, was last in line. Upon seeing his
spiritual father, Laurence began weeping.
“Father Francis,” he said, “I can’t pray.”