From Independent Seeds and Monastic Roots, Blooms the Sacramental Community of the Coworkers of Christ


From Independent Seeds and Monastic Roots, Blooms the Sacramental Community of the Coworkers of Christ

In the fertile ground where the Independent Sacramental Movement and New Monasticism have long intertwined, a new blossom has sprung: the Sacramental Community of the Coworkers of Christ. Our nascent religious order, born from the yearnings for both liturgical richness and community centeredness, is poised to make waves in the contemporary religious landscape.

The seeds of the Coworkers of Christ were sown in the Independent Sacramental Movement, a grassroots movement emphasizing the centrality of the sacraments in Christian life. Disenchanted by the liturgical minimalism or modern whimsy of some mainstream churches, we craved a richer, more traditional, and generous sacramental experience, often drawing inspiration from a wide variety of historic traditions from within the Christian Church throughout the ages. The spirit of the  New Monasticism, meanwhile, offered a yearning for intentional community that was more familial and less institutional, rooted in prayer, service, and shared life.

In the Sacramental Community of the Coworkers of Christ, these seemingly disparate strands converge in a beautiful harmony. Our charism, the building of Sacramental Community Churches, embodies this union. These churches, envisioned as both vibrant worship spaces and hubs of intentional community, will offer traditional liturgies, steeped in symbolism and beauty, alongside opportunities for fellowship, service, prayer, and Christian education. Think of a family gathering but with the scent of incense mingling with the murmur of prayer, worship, and the warmth of shared meals after the Celebration of the Eucharist.

But the Coworkers' vision extends beyond the walls of churches alone. Inspired by the traditions of monastic life, we envision a network of communities dedicated to worship, prayer, work, service, and education. Members will live in shared households and or within individual monastic cells in the larger community, supporting each other and our neighbors on a path of spiritual growth while engaging in various ministries, potentially including running retreat centers, operating social outreach programs, drop-in centers, soup kitchens, or even crafting liturgical objects et cetera.

This unique blend of Independent Sacramentalism and New Monasticism promises a distinct contribution to the religious world. The Sacramental Community Churches will offer a spiritual home for those who find modern churches lacking in liturgical richness, while simultaneously providing a structure for intentional community living. Our focus on building sacramental communities, where prayer, worship, and service are seamlessly interwoven, holds the potential to reinvigorate the practice of faith for many.

Of course, the Sacramental Community of the Coworkers of Christ is still young, its future yet to be fully written. Questions remain about the precise form our churches and communities will take, how we will navigate the complexities of contemporary life, and how we will engage with the broader Christian landscape. Yet, the seeds of our charism are potent, and our commitment to both liturgical beauty and shared community, promises to offer a unique and refreshing path for those seeking a deeper experience of the Christian faith.

As the Coworkers of Christ take root, it will be fascinating to see how our unique blend of Independent Sacramentalism and New Monasticism blossoms in the years to come. Perhaps, in our shared commitment to the centrality of the sacraments, the warmth of community, and the transformative power of service, we will offer a glimpse of a revitalized Christian life within our respective communities.