Gathering of Diocesan Religious
by Br. Franklin Kline
Members of Religious Orders and Communities from throughout the Diocese gathered together Virtually via Zoom on Saturday, July 11, 2020 to join in Evening Prayer and afterward for fellowship. The date marked the Feast of St. Benedict of Nursia, the pioneer of Western Monasticism The group meets quarterly with the worship led in rotation by members of one of the participating communities, and sharing their unique liturgical traditions. The Anglican Order of Preachers (Dominicans) led the service incorporating a number of Dominican liturgical traditions, such as the opening of the Office with. “O Sacred Banquet”, a prayer of Dominican Theologian St. Thomas Aquinas (also included in the BCP 1979) and closing with an Anthem and Prayer for The BVM. The Homily was given by Rev. Amy Fallon, Vicar, Trinity Church, Kirksville, who is a Benedictine Oblate. The participants were delighted that Bishop Deon Johnson was able to join the group, along with Christ Church Cathedral Dean Kathie Adams-Shepherd. The Bishop shared his thoughts on how Religious might contribute to the Diocese’s Spiritual Life and Outreach in Evangelism.
A long anticipated initial gathering of Diocesan Religious was held in October 2019 at Christ Church Cathedral on the Feast of St. Francis, drawing members of The Anglican Dominicans, The Anamchara Fellowship, and the Rivendell Community along with Franciscans. Franciscans led in the Commemoration of the founder of their order according to The Franciscan Tradition. At the February 2020 meeting at Church of The Advent Members of The Anamchara Fellowship led worship according to their Order’s Celtic tradition.
Participants are primarily engaged in “The New Monasticism”, dispersed orders and communities living under a Rule of life; they are both Clergy and Lay, with lay members usually engaged in secular careers, while ministering and serving in their respective dioceses and communities. All those in the Diocese who are members of communities living under Promises or Vows and following a Religious Rule of Life are warmly invited to join in these gatherings. Also welcome are any who may be interested in learning more about the various forms of the Religious Life as are expressed within The Episcopal Church and broader Anglican Communion. The next quarterly gathering is scheduled for Saturday, October 3, the Eve of The Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, which will be led by our Franciscans.