Thank you for your interest in the Companions of Christ Monastery. Your financial support means that we will be able to reach our goal of making a real difference in Memphis.
We have found many who have expressed a desire to live a monastic life (like a monk or nun) but don’t consider themselves Roman Catholic and therefore don’t qualify for many of the religious communities. Also, many of these same people have not been given the gift of celibacy or maybe they are already married and their family feels called to a monastic lifestyle.
We feel God is leading us to create a community of people who love and care for each other as we worship God together. The Monastery will be centered around a general monastic rule which will allow each brother or sister to live out their more specific rule of life within the community.
The Companions of Christ Monastery will be an Old Catholic based community of celibate brothers, celibate sisters, couples, and single persons called together as a monastic spiritual family into deep relationships with and in Jesus Christ. Although we will be liturgically and theologically an Old Catholic Monastery we will be intentional in our commitment to be ecumenical and welcome all Christians within the community. We will share common work and recreation areas while retaining appropriate separate areas for each expression (i.e. male and female, celibate, single, and couples).
Our monastery will be unique in that it will be integrated in many ways. We will integrate both male and female, celibate and non-celibate, family and single. We will also integrate the various monastic traditions like Franciscan, Benedictine, Trappist, and many others. We will balance contemplative and charismatic, stable (i.e., living in one place) and itinerant (i.e., traveling); solitary and communal; and eremitical and active ministry.
Our ministry will be a ministry of service, healing, and hospitality. The Monastery will be a place of peace and healing for any person who seeks refuge.
“At my window a light will be burning.
All may come in; the arms of a friend will always be waiting.”
-Pope John XXIII
We will offer pastoral and psychological counseling, spiritual direction, retreats, and generally be a place of to refresh one's soul.
Our community is unique in that it will be integrated in many ways. We include both male and female, celibate and non-celibate, family and single. We will also integrate the various monastic traditions like Franciscan, Benedictine, Trappist, and many others. We will balance contemplative and charismatic, stable (i.e., living in one place) and itinerant (i.e., traveling); solitary and communal; and eremitical and active ministry. For Old Catholics, the Eucharist is the summit and pinnacle of worship and so we will celebrate the Mass on a daily basis. The public will always be welcome to join us at all worship services.
The Monstery will also support itself by farming/gardening for our own use as well as to sell at local farmer's markets. Daily tasks will include office work, cooking, cleaning, and maintenance of the grounds and buildings. We will work to make the Monastery as self-sufficient as possible to decrease our costs.
But we cannot do this alone, without your assistance both in prayer and with financial assistance this vision will not become a reality. Would you consider helping us to fulfill this vision by doing one of the following:
- passing along this information to anyone you think might be interested,
- making a commitment to pray for us as we undertake this journey, and
- if you are able, making a commitment to support our vision by making a tax deductible donation to our Monastery Fund. You may do so by returning the enclosed form with your check or by visiting our secure website at https://saintfrancisocc.org/monastery
We have already secured commitments from faithful people who have pledged to make this project a success. An architect and designer has graciously donated all of the design services to the Monastery and has already begun that phase of the project. We also have a commitment from another to donate books to furnish our Monastery library and we are in conversation with numerous other faithful people who want to be the first to join as members of the monastic community.
Will you prayerfully consider helping us to complete God’s work of creating an Old Catholic Monastic community in the USA?
With our sincere thanks,
The Rev. Tommy D. Sheppard
Pastor, St. Francis Old Catholic Church
Together we can accomplish this goal. See how just 500 people can raise almost $200,000 in one year. Our Capital Campaign is a 3 year campaign, that’s just over half a million dollars in 3 years. We can do this with your prayers and financial support.
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