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The British monk at Sobrado

2020 Camino Guides

SabineP

Camino = Empathy + Compassion.
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
I do not have any idea but you could mail them?

Their website is very informative.

 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) Portugues(2013)
San Salvador (2017) Ingles (2019)
Found him !

Cum laude, Sabine! I am fascinated by his accent. Where did he learn his Castellano? if it were Scottish English, I would say he learned in Dundee... but then, I am so long out of my own country who am I to say? Anyway, main point: good on you, Sabine, you gave the exact answer to the original question, and bonus was the video.
edit: trecile got it, sorry! Well done, trecile.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I will be staying there in May. I will be pleased to meet him!
 
Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
He's very pleasant; I had a good chat with him and he showed me some of the ancient Cistercian sign language gestures.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte Sept 2013
Camino del Norte Sept 2014
Camino del Norte 2015,16,17,18
Yes it is amazing. He likes a good chat altho isn't it supposed to be a silent order? ! He told me he used to live in Italy. Abandoned UK in late 70's what a good idea. I loved it there and it was good to go to evening prayers altho the formalities were slightly lost on me
 

Davie Blisters

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
.
Lawrence helped me in 2018 - as I arrived into town he took my backpack, so that I could watch England play a World Cup Football game on TV at the local bar. Post match I got to the Monastery and my pack had already been allocated a bed. Divine intervention I guess!
 
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pelerine

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte 10, Primitivo 13, Plata 14+15, Salvador 16, Torres 17, Portugues 18, Mozarabe 19
Yes it is amazing. He likes a good chat altho isn't it supposed to be a silent order? ! He told me he used to live in Italy. Abandoned UK in late 70's what a good idea. I loved it there and it was good to go to evening prayers altho the formalities were slightly lost on me
I was corrected by the monk who looks after the pilgrims that, although cistercian, this monastary was of the trappist variety ie very strict about keeping the silence. However I think the padres are the very strict ones. If this monk is Fra Lawrence, then maybe he does not have to observe vows of silence.
 

koilife

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF w/ son #1 (2013); Logrono-Leon/Salvador/Primitivo w/ son #2 (2016); Portugues w/ son #3 (2020)
I hope this was supposed to be humorous cuz it gave me a chuckle. 😅
Yeah, it's kinda like substitution theology . . . .

Seriously, however, the Cistercians/Trappists are no longer a "silent" order, as in mandatory silence. It is in the DNA of their order, however, to live with a spirit of silence, and so their speaking is still kept to an appropriate minimum. As a result, most of their sign language (which ironically replaced the spoken word and largely undid the value of internal silence) has fallen away now that speech is part of their culture again.

On the other hand, hospitality is a key part of their Benedictine heritage, and the stories of Fr/Br Lawrence's personalized welcoming of pilgrims is classically Benedictine.
 

koilife

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF w/ son #1 (2013); Logrono-Leon/Salvador/Primitivo w/ son #2 (2016); Portugues w/ son #3 (2020)
. . . I think the padres are the very strict ones. If this monk is Fra Lawrence, then maybe he does not have to observe vows of silence.
There used to be a distinction between what were commonly called the "choir monks" and the "lay brothers" as if they were two separate orders with separate rules of life living alongside each other. However, that was collapsed into a single rule and life under the Vatican II reforms. These reforms also led to the emphasis on a spirit of interior rather than formal exterior silence. Thus, whether priest or brother, they have the same obligation for silence. The real difference in speech v silence is their office or job. Those dealing with the public are necessarily more talkative.
 

Lucy Keenan

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Northern Route - 2016
Santiago to Finestiere and Muxia - 2017
Frances Route - May 2018
Camino Ingles
Does anyone know the name of the British brother at Sobrado dos Monxes?
I met him a few years ago. Really interesting man. From South London. Before being at Sobrado he was at another monastery which is now run by nuns.
 

Lynn C O'Hara

Mainelynn
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2016) Norte, Primitivo (2017), Portugues (2018), Finisterre/Muxia (2016)
I met Br Lawrence in 2017. What a fun man! He loves cats, and we had an hour-long conversation on their independence and antics. He let me roam the entire property, and gave me a wonderful tour. Let me see into the small church that is now locked. I felt like an honored guest! I hated to go on my way!
 

Ctshagr

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances- Sarria to Santiago (2017)
Camino Portugués - Porto to Santiago (2018)
Does anyone know the name of the British brother at Sobrado dos Monxes?
I believe his name is Father Lawrence and does he still have his cat?
 

Ctshagr

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances- Sarria to Santiago (2017)
Camino Portugués - Porto to Santiago (2018)
Fr. Lawrence gave me this advice “let the shower run for a while before entering there’s been many screams as pilgrims got hit with the cold water”.
 

Ctshagr

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances- Sarria to Santiago (2017)
Camino Portugués - Porto to Santiago (2018)
I met Mr or Miss Kitty in 03/2019 very friendly.
 

Goran

New member almost four years
Camino(s) past & future
CF '17., SJPdP-Santiago
CP '18., Lisbon-Santiago
CN '19., Irun-Santiago
VdlP '20., Seville-Santiago
The cat's name is Maximilian, also called Max.
20190626_160645.jpg
 
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Jim Michie

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015
Norte 2016
Interesting this is being discussed, one of the high points of my walk. I was surprised to be confronted by a monk when registering at the albergue. He was very friendly and talked a lot about the monastery. Not being Catholic I wanted to be sure of the correct protocols and asked "How do I refer to you?". His reply was a bit shocking as I was expecting something formal "Lawrence".
Jim Michie
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte Sept 2013
Camino del Norte Sept 2014
Camino del Norte 2015,16,17,18
Unfortunately when attending the evening ceremony I was presented with a bowl as I was leaving. I thought it was for collecting donations and had missed the point it was holy water for cleansing of hands.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Wow, 25 positive replies about Father Lawrence and his cat! I can't wait to meet them both in early May!
 

Goran

New member almost four years
Camino(s) past & future
CF '17., SJPdP-Santiago
CP '18., Lisbon-Santiago
CN '19., Irun-Santiago
VdlP '20., Seville-Santiago
Do not miss to visit evening ceremony, it is something special, when father Lawrence play organ and other priests singing.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
Cistercians are a reform of Benedictine spirituality and rule. I am a Benedictine, and can tell you the Rule dictates all those in the monastery keep a “great silence” from the end of nighttime prayers until after breakfast the next morning, speaking only in urgent situations. Speech is limited throughout the rest of the day, but the cellarer (who does the shopping and inventories), the abbot and prior (who are in charge) and the porter - the doorkeeper - have special dispensation to talk as needed. Their jobs are described in great detail by Benedict, the privileges come with extra responsibility, too. So wonderful to spend time in these communities dedicated to prayer.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Cistercians are a reform of Benedictine spirituality and rule. I am a Benedictine, and can tell you the Rule dictates all those in the monastery keep a “great silence” from the end of nighttime prayers until after breakfast the next morning, speaking only in urgent situations. Speech is limited throughout the rest of the day, but the cellarer (who does the shopping and inventories), the abbot and prior (who are in charge) and the porter - the doorkeeper - have special dispensation to talk as needed. Their jobs are described in great detail by Benedict, the privileges come with extra responsibility, too. So wonderful to spend time in these communities dedicated to prayer.
Near where I live in northernn Illinois, we have one of the last Poor Clare convents in the USA. The nuns take a vow of silence, new recruits are dwindling, and the aged have their funerals and are buried on the property. A fascinating book was written in 2014 by author and filmmaker, Abbie Reese, "Dedicated to God; an oral history of cloistered nuns". She formed a rapport with the Mother Superior over many months and was then granted permission and allowed to interview the nuns one at a time.
I really enjoyed the book and also heard the author speak about her experience.
 
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SabineP

Camino = Empathy + Compassion.
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
"Into Great Silence," a 2005 documentary, goes deeply into daily life at a Trappist monastery in the Alps. Beautiful.
Slow watching.
It is one of the best documentaries I have ever seen.
 

koilife

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF w/ son #1 (2013); Logrono-Leon/Salvador/Primitivo w/ son #2 (2016); Portugues w/ son #3 (2020)
Into Great Silence is actually about the Carthusians up at the Grand Chartreuse. Their life makes the Trappists look soft and inviting.
 

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