Abbot Philip Lawrence, OSB
the superior of the Abbey of Christ in the Desert since 1976, has been the administrator of the monastery building projects. Abbot Philip's vision to construct new and expanded buildings has had five primary objectives:
- To use sustainable materials and techniques to safeguard the environment and beauty of the Chama Canyon Wilderness
- That energy production and consumption at the monastery be clean, renewable and cost effective.
- That the buildings meet the needs of the monastic community, now and for the future.
- That the buildings must be beautiful.
- To minimize construction costs.
Working with the other members of the Project Team, and with the counsel of his community, Abbot Philip is seeing his vision being realized. In the fruition of these projects he gives thanks to God for graces received, namely the many and generous benefactors, and his Project Team.
She has been the architect for the projects at Christ in the Desert since 1995 and has found the work on this site to be particularly challenging and rewarding. In addition to the synthesis of design, materials and energy efficiency, Janice has had the opportunity to co-conduct several workdays for volunteer labor, emphasizing sustainable materials and responsible building techniques.
A registered architect in the State of New Mexico, Janice finds her favorite projects are those that integrate regional architectural styles with sustainable and alternative materials. She especially enjoys the challenge of combining these concepts into well designed affordable housing. This thinking prompted her to join the Straw Bale Construction Association in its infancy, and she was active in getting Straw Bale construction incorporated into the New Mexico Building Code.
He spent six years designing spaceflight instruments before moving over to the renewable energy field in 1993. (It's not as big a leap as you might think, since satellites are nearly always solar powered.) After several years developing micro-hydroelectric power systems, Mark moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico and opened Sardella Solar Consulting, focusing on the design of photovoltaic power systems and solar water heating systems. He has been the renewable energy consultant on Christ in the Desert projects since 1997.
Mark is the Secretary of the New Mexico Solar Energy Industries Association, and from this position he is assisting the effort to bring solar tax credits back to New Mexico. Mark is also negotiating an agreement with the local electric utility that will facilitate and encourage the interconnection of small solar electric systems to the power grid.