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Tag Archives: Basil

Basil – A Clue to the Future

How do we develop churches that effectively engage in mission and, at the same time, possess spiritual depth? Basil of Caesarea (330-379) may provide a clue for us. Basil was a creative leader, theologian, monk, community developer, and bishop. Inspired by the devotion of the Egyptian desert monks, he was troubled by their lack of mission. As a result, he moved their monastic houses from the desert to the city so they could go outside their walls to serve the poor and needy. He wanted them to function as role models for people in local churches as well. (See Scott Sunquist’s book Understanding Mission.) He transformed monastic houses into vehicles of mission. Monks and nuns were dedicated to a holy life – for the sake of the church and her mission. For the next 400 years, this then became the norm in Persia, Ethiopia, Egypt, North Africa (Augustine lived in a type of monastic. Read more.

Learning to Lead from the Margins

We need a radically different kind of spiritual formation of leaders in the 21st century. Rosy Kandithal, an assistant pastor/contemplative artist on our New Life staff team, is taking a year to learn at a monastery in Wisconsin. Why? To deepen her being and her roots in Jesus, to learn hiddenness with God, to learn to pray. She is going to learn Christian leadership from the margins. Scott Sunquist, Dean of Fuller’s School of Intercultural Ministry and one of the great historians of global church history of our day, writes:”from the fourth to the fifteenth centuries, Christian mission was kept alive not from the ecclesial center, but from them margins…The rise of monasticism was in part a missional renewal movement: to tear the church away from its early captivity to worldly power and riches.” In the famous School of the Persians at Nisibis, for example, over a thousand students lived in monastic cells. Trained. Read more.