Let's look at another statement.
What does a cloistered religious benefit from my presence when the alternative is the presence of God?
Where do you think that cloistered religious find God? They're religious, not Moses. They don't go climbing mountains and talking to burning bushes. They find God in the same places that you do. The simply get a larger dose than you do. They spend time before the Blessed Sacrament. They pray the LOTH, receive the sacraments, attend mass, do spiritual reading and share life with each other. God is in their life of prayer, sacraments, work, and the people around them. They can find God in you too. In fact, when you arrive, it's a great joy to them. Christ has arrived wearing a new look. That new look is you. You're a Christ bearer, another St. Christopher.
You seem to have over romanticized the cloistered life. Maybe you've been spending too much time on CAF. My experience here is that the lay people who post here tend to go to two extremes. Some over estimate religious life and imagine Fr. O'Malley and Sister Benedict in Bells of St. Mary, the worse movie about priesthood and religious life that Hollywood every put out, because it's not realistic. It's too hygienic. No one gets angry. No one gets in anyone's face. Principals and pastors get along like brother and sister, only on TV. You get the picture.
Other people underestimate religious life and want to equate it to marriage or the single life on the outside, because it bothers them to think of the religious life as a higher calling than the married life. Unfortunately, that's a doctrine of the Council of Trent.
A higher calling, yes. That the person is now angelic, no. The person is still your friend, brother, sister, son, daughter or in my case, parent. He or she has a connection to God through the people in his or her life, in the cloister and outside the cloister. If you don't visit, then Christ can't get there through you.
*Our friend, I believe, is close to sainthood. I say that in all seriousness. *
Talk about toxic faith . . . you have a bad case of it. Our lives are lived in the presence of God and we live for heaven. This is true. Our lives are supposed to serve as a sign of things to come. This also is true. However, we're not religious, cloistered or active, because we're almost saints. We're religious because Christ is holy and merciful. Therefore, he invites us to live in intimacy with him, even with our warts. Your friend lives close to holiness, but it's Christ's holiness. Your friend is the same person, as close as possible.
Here is another thing that one must remember. When one becomes a religious, gets married, becomes a parent or simply graduates from college and gets his first apartment, one changes. People do change. But they don't stop being the same people.
I'm a different person, but I'm still my kids' dad. When my daughter's fiance asked her to marry him, her first reaction was to say, "You need to talk to my dad first." His reaction was, "But your dad is a monk." To which she answered, "He's a friar, not a monks, but he's still my daddy." Guess who is going to walk her down the aisle? Not a monk, but a daddy in a tux and black tie. We change, but our relationships simply evolve. They don't have to die out.
I hope this is at least a little helpful.
Br. JR, FFV :)