Off NM-84 in Abiquiu, not far from Georgia O'Keefe's Ghost Ranch, is Forest Road 151. It wanders along the Chama River, and ends at a place that is quite heavenly, the Monastery of Christ in the Desert.
This beautiful place is completely worth the 13 mile adventure to get there. On the day we visited, the unpaved road to get there was dusty, but passable. On days when it rains, we were told, one might not travel it for days.
Few places have ever made us feel as we did when we stepped inside the monastary's chapel. There is a presence there that can not be described in words. It is peaceful and holy, but beyond the normal meaning of those words. You have to experience it.
The monks encourage visitors. As the website message from their Abbot states:
As a community of Benedictine monks we follow St. Benedict’s rule which asks us to treat each guest and visitor as Christ would be treated. It is, therefore, our special privilege to have all people of whatever faith or belief, ethnic, or cultural background to come to our beautiful canyon and find a place of silence, solitude, and peace as the guests of the Monastery of Christ in the Desert.
It is in this setting and by sharing time with this community that I believe that you can experience that wisdom of the desert which has called so many seekers to come to a place of timeless beauty and profound realness. Here you may well begin to see your life in new perspectives. Here you may well taste and see that the Lord is good. Here you will, I believe, be in a sacred space where those things that seem impossible for yourself are indeed possible for God.
We will definitely return.