Kiwanis speaker shares insight on monastery life - Tehachapi News


Kiwanis member Liz Wolfe is passionate about her support of the Norbertine Canonesses, which is a women’s monastery near Tehachapi. She shared her interest and knowledge with the Kiwanis Club recently.

The Norbertine Order, the oldest of monasteries of the Catholic Church, was established in the 11th century. The local Norbertine Canonesses began in 1997 when 476 acres was acquired near Mountain Park. The monastery began with just five sisters, but that number has increased to the current 43.

The nuns live a life of prayer, contemplation and work. Upon entering the monastery, they surrender all possessions, for everything is held in common. They spend time in classes and studying, but work is important, too. They grow much of their own food so there are gardens and orchards to tend and animals to care for. They also make jams, honey, cheese and other items that are sold in their gift shop.

Wolfe said the Norbertines need a larger chapel and dormitory rooms. She and others are hoping to raise funds for construction. She also promotes fundraisers to help with basic needs of the monastery.

Kiwanis meets Wednesdays at noon at the Police Department Community Room. Its mission is to improve the lives of children. Guests are encouraged to attend meetings and consider joining the club. Call 823-4848 for information.

Phyllis Belcher is a longtime Tehachapi resident, and is involved in various volunteer organizations.

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