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
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.