Construction on the new monastery for the nine nuns of St. Dominic's Monastery in Washington, DC, is about to begin in Front Royal, Virginia.
By building a new monastery, [their attorney Greg] Granitto said, the nuns are building new life for their community and reinforcing that the call to religious life is still being heard by young women. The new monastery will house up to 24 nuns...
The community of nuns is not building only for themselves, but for future groups of their order. For this reason, they are using masonry for the bulk of the building.
"Monasteries traditionally have been built of stone and we want it to last," Sister Mary Paul [Murphy, the prioress,] said.
Granitto said that their determination to build a lasting structure has made the nuns very patient. The monastery will be built in a phased approach -- they will postpone what they can -- instead of substituting quality materials for cheaper materials.
The best line is from the architect:
"Usually, I put a lot of emphasis on entrance design," he said. "The entrance doesn't matter on this because you only go in one time."