Kevin Colyer's thoughts and ponderings

Semi-random rambles


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Inspired by Lorica – One

On my feet, steely eyed
moved by piston power
titanic ice slammed together with unyielding granite
back from the dead energies released
the three, the one, the mystery, the dance
that is the force that surges up my spine

The never flinching gaze
seeing through blackest rot and filth and pain
never missing
never overlooking
a glimmer of redemption, fading light caught in hope

The ever loving gaze
x-raying my marrow and tendons and flesh
delighting in me
joyful always
hoping bright sunshine of kept promises await

No gps signal
no map on a napkin
no flicking compass needle
lost and found with the one
my face kisses the ground
my heart bursts with longing
ecstatic utterances on my tongue
fulfilment of my dreams with such peace
alone with the one and one and one
giddy from the weaving dance

This is the skin I put on
the body I inhabit
to walk in the world that constantly echoes his active spirit
emboldened by thunder
brilliant in with a million headlights glare
pure as honey
switched onto his network forever flowing within the threefold turbulent waters

Explosive one detonate in me

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Missing A Monastic Link?

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Copyright flickr.com user Ian Brittan CC-BY-NC

A video news item from the BBC caught my eye this morning. It is a review of the first year of the new monastic experiment for 20-35’s of the St Anselm community initiated and hosted by Archbishop Justin Welby in Lambeth Palace.

As I watched the video I was reminded quite strongly of the period I was working with Youth With A Mission, England running one year-long programmes of discipleship and evangelism, called Operation Year (Op Year for short). We wore less robes and waved our hands in the air more in worship but that was the only major difference I could see in this short piece by the BBC and my experience: the similarities were overwhelming.

Similarities and differences

Starting off with that which is very similar.

  • Op Year was for 18-35 year olds.
  • Mixture of genders and nationalities
  • Lasted one year (!)
  • Mixture of training, spiritual development, prayer and outreach work
  • Residential
  • Ecumenical (if I understand the t’s & c’s correctly)
  • a Sodal community – not a rooted local church (see here)
  • The Archbishop (he has initiated St Anselm’s community and is also the Patron of Youth With A Mission, England
  • Benefits – both years lead people more deeply rooted in their faith, with a deeper knowledge of who they are, skills for life and ministry and a deeper compassion.

The community of St Anselm is of course different and not the same thing and what immediately springs to mind are:

  • Intent – Op Year is run by a missionary organisation and has stronger evangelisation goals.  St Anselm seeks to be a monastic community
  • Rule of life – St Anselm has a clearly defined rule of life and a stronger rhythm of prayer
  • Philosophy of discipleship – this requires a deeper look but I would expect the formation to be more reflective and gently guided. YWAM’s style is more provocative and drives change through passionate inspiration and challenges change and growth. (I believe both approaches equally valid)
  • Somewhat cheaper – no cost is mentioned for St Anselm. Op Year charges for board, accommodation and tuition for a year.
  • St Anselm is heading into a second year and as far as I know there are no Op Years running.

There are more differences I am certain and I am writing this with scant true knowledge of St Anselm’s (please forgive!) I have recently moved from Youth With A Mission where I had extensive Op Year experience over the years and I am currently an Anglican Ordinand studying for Pioneer ministry.

I am intrigued about the new monastic movement from which I assume that St Anselm’s is drawing inspiration from. I would be very interested in comparing and contrasting and reflecting much more deeply on the tension between the two programmes. I would not have wished to identify with a monastic experience when I was a member and a leader of Op Years, but now I am not too sure if it was not more closely aligned than I could have imagined. I wonder what I will learn as I dig deeper?