The largest number of Mooters ever took part in the annual ‘Rhythm of Life’ Commitment Service today before David Meara the Archdeacon of London on Pentecost Sunday. As Moot goes from strength to strength in St Mary Aldermary, (the new home for the community for where it has resided for under 3 years), it was deeply encouraging to experience so many new mooters and those more established committing to following the way of Jesus Christ as a monastic new monastic seasonal vow.
This year, prayer hand labyrinths were given out as gifts to enrich personal prayer which were specially handmade for the occasion. In his homily, the Archdeacon of London talked of the vocation of Moot to live and think outside of the box in obedience to God, but in new and creative ways.
In the intercessions, a number of international companions and leaders of Sister Communities – both mendicant and new monastics prayed for the community. Jonathan Clark, the Bishop of Croydon prayed for Moot to remain true to its vocation, Sister Joyce of the Anglican Franciscans prayed that Moot will continue to take risks with mission and grow into the religious life, Emma Loveridge of the Sinai in the City New Monastic Community prayed that Moot would sustain its prophetic role and witness whilst Jonathan Dowman of the B1 Birmingham based New Monastic Community prayed that Moot would meet the challenge this year of the material and financial resources it needed to achieve its mission and ministry activity, particularly of the Host Cafe Project.
This year Moot will say a goodbye to a number of its participants including Grace Cowley and Aaron Kennedy who are getting married in the summer and then moving to Cambridge as Aaron becomes an Ordinand studying to become a Church of England Priest at Westcott House in Cambridge.
As part of a Church of England pilot, the Moot Community is currently in a discernment process to become a New Monastic Acknowledged Religious Community. This will mean that it will be setting up a new national umbrella organisation that will not only support Moot, but a number of other new monastic communities under the same society. It is currently being proposed that this will be called the Society of the Holy Trinity reflecting an organisation that was set up under the Oxford Movement which recently failed. It is hoped that the new constitution of the Acknowledged Religious Community will be completed by July 2013.
At the Moot Eucharist on Sunday 21st April 2013, Ian Mobsby explored the theme of Home is where the heart is drawing on Ephesians 1:1 to 14 and The Gospel of Luke 24:36-49. In these biblical texts Ian explores the theme of the resurrection as an event of grace, that opens up the call for our lives as Christians as an event.
Ian then explores how this idea of ‘event’ informs a New Monastic understanding of a Rhythm of Life as an orientation of the heart. In this Service the Moot Community began a period of reflection leading to a planned Recommitment Service on Pentecost Sunday.
To see a copy of the Rhythm of Life reflection document, please click here.
Time is flying past this year, and now that we are in the season of Easter it is time to plan for our forthcoming Rhythm of Life (ROL) Service. This is the opportunity each year, that the Moot Community commit to following the ROL for the year to come. This year we hope to invite some of our international companions to join with us to commit to elements of the aspirations, spiritual practices and postures. This is open to anyone who sees Moot as the or one of their spiritual homes. We want to include as many as possible.
The way this works has different levels depending on where you are on your spiritual journey. If you see yourself as a spiritual explorer interested in Moot’s aspirations in how we seek to live but don’t consider yourself a Christian – then you can be included affirming the Aspirations.
If you consider yourself to be a follower of the way of Jesus Christ, then we would encourage you to affirm the spiritual practices and postures. These seek to name what it means to live a rhythm of prayerful action in obedience to the inspiration of Jesus.
If you consider yourself to be a follower of the way of Jesus, but are geographically disconnected from participating in the community, then we have a simplified section for those who are international companions.
The ROL Service will be followed by a social celebration of the Moot Community at St Mary Aldermary.
For a download of a simple summary of the Aspirations, Spiritual Practices and Postures, please see below.
On Pentecost Sunday 2012, Bp Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, led the Moot recommitment service to the Community’s Rhythm of Life. In the homily, Bp Richard explores the themes of the renewal in mission and healing of the Holy Spirit. In particular he explores the life and vision of Dorothy Kerin who founded the Burrswood Community and its focus on wellbeing and healing.
This homily was re-recorded after the Rhythm of Life Service by an alternative voice from the written homily of Bp Richard, at the Guild Church of St Mary Aldermary, the Home of the Moot Community. Permission was sought and given for this recording.
This Sunday will be Moot’s second Rhythm of Life Service in the Guild Church of St Mary Aldermary, and the first before the Bishop of London in our new home. This service is open to anyone to attend, so please do come if you are around Sunday 4pm. The Service is followed by a drinks reception/party afterwards. If you are a participant of Moot, or who have travelled with us, you are also invited to participate in this and affirm the aspirations and/or spiritual practices. Attached below is an introduction to the ROL.
Having aspirations and spiritual practices is very much part of our ROL basis and an expression of our New Monastic expression of Church which expresses the heart of Moot. This year we are making the important point that the aspirations are not just for Christians who are part of the community, but aspirations for those who are not followers of the way of Jesus but who are exploring this, and want to commit to a seasonal aspiration or intention to explore this further. Aspirations then can be affirmed by those who are Christians or not. Spiritual practices however are an attempt to express what it means to be a a follower of the way of Jesus in the practical cycles of how we live. They seek to balance the sustaining of a spiritual life through action and activity as a healthy balance of doing and being.
The Spiritual postures are again an articulation and commitment to be open to God at the heart of what we seek to become as followers and listeners to God.
For further discussion, but some of us are feeling that we also need to start to explore a deeper centre to the community, which is about the practice not only of following Jesus but wanting to create a greater sense of being a relational community. This is only a thought and discussion for some at the moment and will not be included in this year’s ROL Service, but will be something that some participants of the community will be raising for our discernment.
So Sunday is going to be a great day – hopefully sunny – and we have friends coming from Greece, Australia and Telford (Hehe!) So please do come along it will be good!
Our annual Rhythm of Life service is taking place in St Mary Aldermary on Sunday 27 May from 4pm. This is a vital moment in Moot’s calendar, as it is where the Community re-affirms its dedication to following a rhythm of life through presence, acceptance, creativity, balance, accountability and hospitality. All members of the Community are invited to attend and take part, and we would gladly welcome anyone who wishes to come and support us. For more detailed information on the Community’s Rhythm of Life, please click here and here.
The Community is also in need of people to actually help plan and prepare for this service, whether before hand as part of a working group or to help set up on the day. If you would like to help, please contact us here.