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Marks of the new monasticism

Marks of the new monasticism

Sharon Ely Pearson has a post on the Building Faith blog on “the marks of the new monasticism.” They are:

Marks of a New Monasticism

Relocating to the abandoned places of empire.

Sharing economic resources with fellow community members and the needy among us.

Hospitality to the stranger.

Lament for racial divisions within the church and our communities, combined with the active pursuit of a just reconciliation.

Humble submission to Christ’s body, the church.

Intentional formation in the way of Christ and the rule of the community, along the lines of the old novitiate.

Nurturing common life among members of an intentional community.

Support for celibate singles alongside monogamous married couples and their children.

Geographical proximity to community members who share a common rule of life.

Care for the plot of God’s earth given to us, along with support of our local economies.

Peacemaking in the midst of violence, and conflict resolution within communities along the lines of Matthew 18:15-20.

Commitment to a disciplined contemplative life.

Have you had experiences with the new monasticism? Is the movement active in your diocese?


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Joseph Wolyniak

Thanks for this!

There are a bunch of newly emergent communities across the Episcopal Church that have either been directly informed by the ‘new monastic’ movement or coincidentally share much in common with the new monastic folks…

Here’s just a partial list off the top of my head (NB, some are formally affiliated with their diocese / local parish, others are not):

– The Community of the Franciscan Way – Durham, NC / Diocese of North Carolina (,

– Ascension House – New Haven, CT / Diocese of Connecticut (,

– St Francis House – New London, CT / Diocese of Connecticut (

– Common Friars / Good Earth Farm – Athens, OH / Diocese of Southern Ohio (,

– Casa Mariposa – Tuscon, AZ / Diocese of Arizona (,

Some of us associated with these communities have discussed trying to develop a website with a complete list. Anyone interested? Email me: j.wolyniak [at]

Readers may also be interested in the National Association of Episcopal Christian Communities (encompassing both ‘Religious Orders’ and ‘Intentional Christian Communities’ in the Episcopal Church):

Brother Steven

Celibacy? Monogamous? Married? I cannot understand a monasticism that, in what Phyllis Tickle proclaims as the Age of the Spirit, concerns itself with issues free expression of human sexuality. Spirit prevails. I am called to support all regardless of whatever. Peace to all.

[Brother Steven – Please sign your full name next time you comment – thanks ~editor]

Ormonde Plater

That’s “celibate singles”?

[typo fixed. thanks, ~editor]

Heidi Haverkamp

Just to clarify, Pearson is quoting Shane Claiborne’s marks of new monasticism here.

Richard Edward Helmer

The Brotherhood of St. Gregory has been, together, meeting most if not all of these criteria for decades, though we are not all young adults! A snapshot of our diverse ministries:

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