OBLATES of SAINT BENEDICT are Christian men and women who strive to live in the secular world according to the spirit of the Rule of St. Benedict. Although they are not monks or nuns, they draw inspiration from the Rule and from their ongoing affiliation with a particular Benedictine community for the task of living out the Gospel of Christ in their families and at their workplaces. Through their oblation or gift of themselves to God, they become part of the "extended family" of a particular Benedictine monastery, and share in the prayer and work of that community. Thus an oblate is not simply someone who is interested in monastic spirituality: like a monk or nun, the oblate is part of a particular monastic community which he or she regards as his or her spiritual home. This does not mean that the monastery in any sense competes with or could ever replace one's local parish. Instead, oblates carry Benedictine spirituality back to their parish communities, and they share with their monastic community the fruit of their life in the parish and in the world.
THE OBLATES of SAINT ANDREW'S ABBEY find a pattern for their own spiritual lives in the rhythms of silence and speech, solitude and hospitality, contemplative prayer and liturgy, which characterize monastic practice at Valyermo. The oblate program and the process of oblate formation are described in more detail in the Oblate Constitutions, a document which is part of the Customary (and thus part of the "proper law") of the Abbey.
OBLATES of SAINT ANDREW'S ABBEY meet regularly for prayer and fellowship, both at the Abbey and in local groups. Retreats for oblates and others interested in monastic spirituality are held at the Abbey throughout the year (Abbey retreats). An afternoon conference for oblates is given once a month on Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m at the Abbey.
Link to information on oblate groups that meet at the Abbey and in Southern California: