The convent – a group of religious roommates?
A Benedictine community is far more than a few handful of pious men living and praying together as an informal group. In a community, members are prepared to assume responsibility for each other, both in matters of religion and the more mundane matters of everyday life. Living in a community means sharing common values. This enables individuals to develop, to grow, to mature.
St.Benedict postulates: “… so there is a good zeal which ... leads to God and to life everlasting.
This zeal, therefore, the brothers should practice with the most fervent love. Thus they should anticipate one another in honor; most patiently endure one another's infirmities, whether of body or of character; vie in paying obedience one to another -- no one following what he considers useful for himself, but rather what benefits another -- ; tender the charity of brotherhood chastely; … prefer nothing whatever to Christ. And may He bring us all together to life everlasting!
(RB, 72, translation taken and amended from osb.org)