Saturday, March 31, 2012

More Ways Yadda-Yadda Continued

There are some ways of getting more financial support for the community. Depending on the community's interest, you could do anything from brew beer, roast coffee, grow vegetables--whatever. It's really up to the community, and how they could best use their gifts. You may also look into getting grants from Lily and one's ecclesiastical authority.

Alright, another important factor is having a social presence for the community. So, it should be built into the community that they not only work with the church's existing outreach ministries, but also find other places to offer time and help. Obviously the community cannot do everything, but should try to choose which ministries are best suited to the community members (likewise with other social works) and try to do these things as a community. This allows the community to be known as more than a para-church organization, and allows the community a chance to be the Church in an active way.

Finally, if at all possible, the community should try to offer hospitality whenever possible. Whether this is inviting people in the wider community or their parish to meals--or even keeping a retreat room. It is important the the community be outside of the house, but also allow others to come into the community's space.

As to this idea of offering retreat space, some ideas I have on this would be that a minimum offering would be required. A person on retreat would keep the prayer schedule of the community and share common meals. The minimum offering would vary according to how long a person might stay (to cover food cost, etc.). The community would be responsible for checking in with the person, and mainly help them feel welcome.

I know all of this is pretty ridiculous--but it does make me wonder what would happen if the stars were right and something like this actually took off...
As I've said before I feel like we're approaching a kind of new Dark Age when the place of the Church and true religion is being usurped by selfish, narcissistic 'spirituality.' The garbage that Thomas Merton called false mysticism. Just like in the time of Christian Monasticism's birth, we have politicians using religion and devotion as campaign platforms. And the truth is, that like it did back in the original Dark Ages, the Church just might need to go to seed, and explore it's roots to see how to survive. Maybe monasticism is part of that.

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