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Ian Mobsby & Mark Berry

A New Monastic Handbook: From vision to practice

IBSN: 9781 8482 5458 9

Canterbury Press, 2013, 207 pp, £16.99

Coming from both Evangelical and Catholic traditions, Ian Mobsby (Moot Community) and Mark Berry (safespace & CMS) provide here a really good and comprehensive guide to the rapidly developing movement in the Anglican Communion, known as New Monasticism. But it is more than a guide, it is about helping us in the formation process, towards creating contemporary Community life and witness within the Church and aiding its mission strategy. The emphasis is to assist those exploring intentional living in community. As such its carefully logged components offer practical advice for in depth development and authentic growth.

Ian who is single and Mark who is married, are committed to the practice of Gospel living and share their experiences with stories and lists of essential ingredients for building community in the framework of the religious life through the generations.

Solidly based within the life of the Trinity they carefully lay down the benchmarks. The established communities, whose voices are heard throughout, give a fundamental expression to colour new horizons. The context is usually towards a dispersed membership. Christ’s mission to the world drives the direction of these spelt-out codes as the basis for community practice and content for a rhythm of prayer and engagement.

New monasticism may be moving in three directions: for the sake of the de- or never-churched, or in the friar tradition with intentional aims, or in a vision combining both the monk and friar models. Many examples are given of existing communities. It is the spelling out of those basic ingredients that makes this handbook so helpful and so important. The Holy Spirit is actively calling a new generation towards spiritual holiness within a shared calling to follow Christ, in company, for the love of God and our fellow travellers on the road.

Damian SSF