We've had several people contact us asking what we mean by "healing through community". So I thought it warranted a blog post to explain exactly what we mean.
Life is not an easy journey. Some people grow up in homes where they are abused and learn that love means violence. Some people grow up in foster home after foster home where they learn not to trust anyone. Some people grow up in all kinds of mess where they learn disfunctional ways of being. Some people lose everything due to mental illness and spend their lives wandering the streets. Some people have a traumatic event such as a terminal diagnosis, death of a loved one, or lose everything in a house fire.
We believe that the most effective way to work through something like this is through a loving community or what Josiah Royce coined and Martin Luther King, Jr. made popular, was the Beloved Community. According to The King Center:
In the Beloved Community, poverty, hunger, and homelessness will not be tolerated because international standards of human decency will not allow it. Racism and all forms of discrimination, bigotry, and prejudice will be replaced by an all-inclusive spirit of sisterhood and brotherhood. In the Beloved Community, international disputes will be resolved by peaceful conflict-resolution and reconciliation of adversaries, instead of military power. Love and trust will triumph over fear and hatred. Peace with justice will prevail over war and military conflict.
The Companions of Christ Monastery will be a Beloved Community that will come alongside the hurting and wounded individuals and journey with them down the road of healing. It is our belief that within an intentional community that focuses on nonviolence, peace, equality, and healing a person's journey to healing will be shortened. We also believe that within this community the healing will be more complete and the individual will come out on the other side of the hurt as a healthier more complete individual than before.
Some might ask, "Well isn't that what a hospital or psychiatric hospital are for?" and we would answer yes and no. Our focus will be to work with people who don't need such intensive services. Maybe they have been discharged from the hospital and have no where to go or maybe they don't have any support system. Maybe the person's mental health care doesn't rise to the level of hospitalization. We will not be a medical facility or mental health facility. We will be a monastic community that serves our neighbors by caring for them when they are at their most vulnerable. Our goal is to provide a safe nurturing place for a person to recover from life's storms. The Monastery will not be a place to hide from the world but instead be a place of sanctuary to allow a person to reach wholeness so that they can resume their lives.
The Monastery will provide a daily structure of prayer, worship, and work along with appropriate recreation. During the growing season, work will primarily focus on growing food items that will both feed the Monastery and be sold at farmer's markets to help support ourselves. There will also be the regular work of cleaning and upkeep of the building and grounds as well as the work of hospitality to our guests.
Your financial support will help make the Beloved Community possible. Would you help us to achieve what some say is impossible?
You can donate by visiting the link here.