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Glasshampton SSF

This house offers guest and retreat accommodation, click for more information

Glasshampton Monastery is a house of prayer of the Society of Saint Francis (SSF). As in all our houses, our life here revolves around the three ways of service of prayer, study and work, but with the particular emphases of the daily prayer centred on the monastery chapel, and the ministry of welcoming those who visit and those who come to stay as brothers and sisters in the love of Christ.

The house itself was originally a stable-block, built for a large mansion now ploughed under the neighbouring field. The stables were built around 1810, but the main house burned down soon afterwards and was never rebuilt. After this, one corner of the stables was used as a gamekeeper’s cottage while the rest mostly became derelict.

In the early years of the twentieth century, Father William Sirr of the Society of the Divine Compassion (SDC) felt called by God to leave his work in the East End of London to begin a contemplative life of prayer in a more secluded setting. In the winter of 1918 he moved to Glasshampton and established the religious life in this place.

For nearly 20 years Fr. William lived here, leading a life of silence, contemplation, intercessory prayer and manual labour. He renovated the building to make it habitable again. People came to stay for shorter or longer periods of time, finding in him a spiritual director of great holiness. He had always hoped to found a contemplative community at Glasshampton, but as the years went by it became clear that no community was going to form around him.

Fr. William died in 1937, and in 1947 the Society of St. Francis were invited to come to live at Glasshampton.

From that time the monastery has acted as a place where a group of professed brothers seek to live out the contemplative side of the Franciscan charism, where novice brothers receive part of their training, and where guests come to be refreshed by the quiet prayerfulness of the house. The life of the house is focussed on the chapel where we gather for prayer 5 times a day, saying the Daily Office and celebrating a daily Eucharist, supplemented by times of silent prayer morning and evening. The working hours of the day are filled with cooking, gardening, maintenance, and looking after the guests who come to visit or stay.

Glasshampton offers retreat and guest accommodation – click here for more information.

Click here for our Around the Houses page for locations and links to each house