Lots of folks have been wondering what the Church will look like in the age of instant communications. I certainly have…
Derek, upon the occasion of attending a lecture by Phyllis Tickle, has shared some of his. One of the major concerns that he has, and which I share, is that the church in the Internet age is in danger of becoming the equivalent of an eccleisial flash-mob. Derek has some ideas about how the monastic experience might serve to ameliorate this danger:
“A Christian culture shaped by the Internet will be a perversion of the Gospel unless it is grounded in balance and in simple rhythms. Stability. Obedience. Conversion of life.
The stabilizing element of this emerging thing she describes is a rediscovery of monastic principles. And, like that of the Reformation, it won’t take place behind cloistered walls. Don’t get me wrong—cloisters will and must remain for this to work imho. We in the world will always need a model to point to we just won’t all live there. Rather, it will occur in the midst of normal domestic lives but will give them a shape, a character, a rule, to enable simple intentional Christian life in an increasing driven and frenetic age.
Not everyone, not all Christians will engage in this—and that’s all right. The monastic way has always served as leaven in the lump. Not all are or need be monks or oblates, but those who are still leaven and invigorate the rest of the church. To put a finer point on it, not all need observe a rule or pray the Offices or some similar discipline, but it’s crucial that some do and will. I think that’s where we’re headed and what we’re up to.”
Read the rest here: The Great Emergence