A recent development among Protestant radicals in the West, NM has spiritual roots in such ecumenical communities as Iona (Scotland), Taize (France) and Bose (Italy). Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s prediction about a ‘new monasticism’ and his intentional ‘Bruderhaus’ at Finkenwalde is sufficient evidence, many believe, for perceiving Bonhoeffer as some kind of neo-monastic prophet. Considering our rapidly secularising society, why are we not seeing similar examples of intentional communities in this country? I mentioned two factors yesterday:

  • economic trajectory
  • counter-cultural ideology

Race has to come into it. This was picked up already in the 12 Marks, but here is a more penetrating analysis and an equally sharp comment.

In South Africa, most people haven’t shared in enough prosperity to have become  disillusioned with it. Secondly, with the SA Council of Churches endorsing a ‘critical solidarity’ with the government’s development programme (RDP), there is precious little distance from state power to maintain a prophetic voice, never mind a counter-culture.