Inside the Life of a Local Hermit

By: Ryan Wing Email
By: Ryan Wing Email

To many people, the life of a hermit involves solitude and loneliness.

But that isn't the case for one local hermit who invites others to join him every day for worship.

Fr. James Joseph Genovesi originally began as a priest in Michigan before his father became sick in 1996.

It was at that time he felt a higher calling to becomes a hermit.

He began his life as a hermit in La Crosse and after living as a hermit for a year, he created the Franciscan Hermits of Perpetual Adoration.

In 2000, he moved his hermitage to 40 acres of land he was given outside of Stevens Point.

Fr. Genovesi, like most hermits, lives alone and has taken an oath of poverty.

He says, "The one thing that we find interwoven in the lives of hermits is whatever they're doing to support themselves, they still have their life as much as possible of solitude and prayer. A hermit lives solely for God."

He holds mass in the small chapel attached to his house every morning at 8.

The chapel and his house are full of statues and relics he has collected and restored over the years.

Sometime this October, the hermitage will move into their new 4,500 square foot chapel to be built just yards away from his home.

Fr. Genovesi expects to break ground on the chapel sometime in May.

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