Dormition of the Mother of God
Orthodox Monastery
Rives Junction, Michigan

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Visitor Guidelines

The monastic community receives all visitors as fellow pilgrims, joining us in our common journey toward Christ.  

Some stop by for only a few minutes, while others stay for several days in our guest house, but our prayer is that all will have the opportunity to:

"Taste and see that the Lord is good"

and to

"Be still, and know that He is God"

 Thus, we ask that all visitors share the responsibility of cultivating a reverent atmosphere throughout their stay.  To aid in that goal, we offer the following guidelines for visitors under the headings: General Information, and Guest House.

 

General Information

The monastery buildings and grounds are sacred, set apart as an offering to God and his most blessed Mother by the prayer of monastics and pilgrims since its founding. We hope that you will sense this blessing throughout the monastery complex and treat it with the same piety and love as the inside of a church.

Planning a visit: All visitors are encouraged to contact the monastery in advance; those requesting to stay overnight in the guest house should try to coordinate their stay at least two weeks in advance.  Phone and email information can be found here.

Attire: Dress should be modest, neither drawing attention to oneself nor reflecting fads and practices found in the culture.   We ask that everyone wear socks with sandals or shoes.

Men, including boys seven years and older, should wear long pants and long sleeve shirts at all times.

Women, including girls seven years and older, should wear dresses or skirts below the knee and head coverings while in the church or trapeza (dining room).  In the guest house and outdoors on the monastery grounds women are permitted to wear loose fitting slacks.  At all times tops must be modest: neither low cut nor revealing, and have long sleeves.

Children (under the age of 7) are under the loving care and spiritual guidance of their parents at all times and are welcome here at the monastery. We hope they will be inspired by and imitate the examples of modest attire as they "grow in wisdom and stature and favor with God and man".

Clergy are asked to wear cassocks on the grounds and a Riassa for the services.

Conversations: Whether at meals, in the guest house, or throughout the monastery grounds, conversations should be restrained and conducive to inner reflection, not given to loud outbursts, idle chatter or unrestrained laughter.  This is a gift you give to others (including the monastics), as well as to yourself.

Services: Visitors to the Monastery are expected to participate in the services and observe the schedule of the monastic community.

Fasting: It is the monastic practice to fast (from meat, eggs, dairy products, and fish) on Mondays, as well as Wednesdays and Fridays, and during the four major fasting periods of the year.  As a part of your spiritual effort, and so as not to be a temptation to others, we ask that you follow the monastery's fasting rule while at the monastery, including in the guest house.  Those who due to age or medical conditions must observe modifications to the normal fasting practice should, of course, follow their physican's direction, but, discretely, so as not to draw attention to themselves or be a source of temptation to others.

Photography: You need a blessing from the Abbess before taking photographs at the monastery. Please do not take pictures of the nuns or in the church.

Miscellaneous: 

Children are welcomed and enjoyed at the monastery.  We do ask, however, that children be under the supervision of their parents (or other designated adults) at all times.  

Smoking is strictly prohibited on the grounds and in the buildings.  

Pets are not permitted at the monastery.

 

Guest House

Overnight guests are invited to meals served in the dining room. In addition they are welcome to all the food and drinks provided in the community room of the guest house.  Please keep them fresh for the other guests by putting them back in the packages and refrigerator.

  • While in the house, close and open the doors quietly; other guest could be resting or praying. Quiet time begins at 9:00 PM weekdays and 10:00 PM on Saturdays.
  • If you are alone in the room please use only one bed and keep the other bed clean (refrain from putting your luggage on it).
  • Food and drinks are not allowed in the bedrooms except for water.
  • Alchoholic drinks are not allowed in the guest house.
  • No smoking is allowed in any of the buildings or on the monastery property.
  • We ask that the children be supervised at all times.
  • Please strip your bed before you leave; take off the sheets, put them in the pillow case and put the damp towels on the rack.

(For your convenience these guidelines are also posted in each guest room)