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If the church is more than just a building, what could it mean to live in it—to inhabit it as a way of life? From their location in new monastic communities, Otto, Stock, and Wilson-Hartgrove ask what the church can learn from St. Benedict’s vows of conversion, obedience, and stability about how to live as the people of God in the world. In storytelling and serious engagement with Scripture, old wisdom breathes life into a new monasticism. But, like all monastic wisdom, these reflections are not just for monks. They speak directly to the challenge of being the church in America today and the good news Christ offers for the whole world.
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
Conversations between contemporary Christian communities and Benedictine monasticism are among the most surprising and promising in the church today. Given that the roots of monasticism and of contemporary Protestantism lie in different parts of the Christian tradition, mutual engagement between contemporary Christians and monastics has been rare. Recently, however, the scene has shifted, and Inhabiting the Church represents the new eagerness to learn the art of living together faithfully from experienced and ancient practitioners.
—Christine D. Pohl, from the Foreword
Protestants looking for a richer, thicker, more robust, and enchanted way of living into the Christian story should not ignore this invitation into the rhythms and cadences of Benedictine spirituality. Indeed, only one kind of person should avoid this book: the reader who does not wish to be changed.
—Lauren F. Winner, assistant professor of Christian spirituality, Duke Divinity School
This book is a timely intersection of the new and ancient, breathing fresh life into an aging body. An older generation will find this book a long-awaited reassurance that the Spirit is still stirring radical nonconformity on the margins of empires. And the contemporary renewal of new monastics and prophetic tricksters will find a cure for the pretension and sloppiness that can so often taint our vision or tempt us to pretend that there is ‘something new under the sun.’ With both courage and humility, we will all find ourselves invited to inhabit the incarnational body that makes God visible to the world . . . May it inspire all of us to become the church that God longs for.
—Shane Claiborne, founding member, The Simple Way
These folks are bringing things both old and new out of the great Christian storehouse! The New Monasticism is discovering what is always rediscovered—and always bears great life for the gospel.
—Richard Rohr, founder, Center for Action and Contemplation
Jon Stock is a member of Church of the Servant King, publisher of Wipf & Stock, and proprietor of Windows Booksellers in Eugene, Oregon.
Tim Otto serves as an associate pastor of the Church of the Sojourners in San Francisco. He is also a part-time nurse at the San Francisco county hospital, working with AIDS and cancer patients.
Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove is a speaker and spiritual writer. He lives with his wife, Leah, and other friends at the Rutba House, a new monastic community of hospitality, peacemaking, and discipleship that he founded in Durham, North Carolina.