Bonnevaux is the international meditation and retreat centre of The World Community for Christian Meditation (WCCM). A residential community lives in the spirit of the Rule of St Benedict together with volunteers from many parts of the world. Bonnevaux serves global peace and unity among all traditions through dialogue, silence and friendship.
Bonnevaux is the spiritual home for the WCCM. The Community is now present in more than 100 countries with 67 National Coordinators. Each National Community serves the WCCM mission of sharing the gift of meditation with all “in the spirit of serving the unity of all”. Bonnevaux also serves as a place for training teachers and the next generation of WCCM; we are particularly concerned for young people facing the challenges of modern life (photo: younger meditators during the John Main Seminar 2022 at Bonnevaux).
Since John Main began the first Christian Meditation Centre at his monastery in 1975 the seed of his vision has grown to become a “global monastery without walls”. The idea of having a physical home for this community has grown through many years of discernment.
The mission of the Community has aspects of inreach and outreach. By inreach we mean the awakening of the contemplative dimension of Christian faith and life, especially through the teaching of meditation in churches, dioceses, schools, and universities. By outreach we mean sharing of the fruits of meditation in a secular context in order to develop new forms of leadership and new ideas for organizational and professional life.
Like the WCCM, Bonnevaux is an ecumenical community committed to friendship and collaboration among all faiths and secular society.
Our hope is that everyone who visits Bonnevaux will be touched by the spirit of peace and a deeper experience of silence. With this seed of transformation planted, visitors will then be better able to develop the contemplative dimension in their own lives and in the lives of the people with whom they live and work.
The original foundations and extant cloister of the Abbaye date to the 12th century – the main building experienced significant remodelling in the 19th century. Our renovation of Bonnevaux respects the heritage of the past while meeting the needs of the present. The main house has 15 rooms, capacity for 20, accommodating the resident community and visitors. The ground floor accommodates communal spaces and facilities including a library, lounge and dining areas. Bedrooms are situated on the first floor. The Community moved to the Abbaye in 2019, when we had the first Holy Week Retreat at Bonnevaux and the official blessing, later in that same year.