The community has been fortunate of late to enjoy visits from other communities. The latest of these has been by the Archbishop’s Community of St. Anselm based at Lambeth Palace. Last week we hosted Miranda and Michael, Methodist North American citizens from Florida and Mississippi.
The Community was set up in September 2015, when the Archbishop invited Christians aged twenty to thirty-five to join a religious order dedicated to prayer and service of the poor. The community follows a regular Benedictine rhythm of prayer, work and study which shapes its charism. Altogether, there are thirty-six members of St. Anselm comprising resident and non-resident members Applications are invited from across the world, giving an international feel to the group as a whole. The setup of this community speaks strongly of Archbishop Justin’s belief that the religious life continues to speak resoundingly to the church in our day.
The Prior was able to put together a varied programme for our visitors, who took part in everything from a site tour (with yours truly,) to gardening with the noviciate and church cleaning! We also heard their contributions to discussions on ‘The Life’ and ‘Following Christ today.’ At the end of the week, the novices were able to host a social for Miranda and Michael, during which we participated in a fun game of heads-up! (Don’t ask.)
This second visit of St. Anselm’s members was again mutually fruitful in terms both of our learning about the look of 21st century monastic life and sharing fellowship. It is my second experience of these visits, and I think it’s definitely something we brothers of CR are coming to value.