Sanctuary on the Plain

After Divorce, a Retreat

By Kim Steinberg

Photos courtesy of Monastery of the Ascension

Divorce is a death. The death of dreams, the death of a family, and often, the loss of a father. Mine was all three. In 1999, I went to the Monastery of the Ascension in Jerome seeking peace, understanding, and perhaps, grace. I hadn’t been to church since I was a child. I am a lapsed Catholic, not religious, but the graveled driveway and lovingly tended grounds welcomed me.

The building in front of me was angular in its simplicity: tall triple-arched entrance, juxtaposed by cross-sections of wooden beams, the windows lit from within. Father Norbert greeted me. He had a serious round face, wire-rimmed eyeglasses, and a gray fringe of hair. The hallway glowed as he led the way to a plain single room with private bath, and a small desk. This would be my home for the next three nights.

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Kim Steinberg

About Kim Steinberg

Kim Steinberg has lived in Boise since 1981. Her work has been published in this magazine as well as Writers in the Attic, The Cabin Anthology, Bewildering Stories, Shut Up and Write Zine, and Potato Soup Journal.  She is currently editing an around-the-world travel memoir.

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