Joan Chittister

Lesson 14: Stability

Lesson 14: Stability

If my first attraction to the Benedictine Rule was its hospitality, my second was its stability. A pastor easily felt the impact of the mobile technology at first offered and then demanded. Children leaving town for college, exciting vocations, and big time salaries brought new opportunities. However, before long, opportunity became demand as there were […]

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Lesson 11: Giftedness

Lesson 11: Giftedness

In 2000, Robert Putnam published Bowling Alone. It has quickly become a classic for understanding modern American community. His thesis is that our nation has lost our sense of the common good, because technology inherently promotes radical individualism. He used the breakdown of voluntary groups such as bowling leagues, social clubs, fraternal organizations, and churches as […]

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Lesson 8: Work

Lesson 8: Work

The classic definition of economy was the management of the family or community that makes sure everyone is treated with dignity and has enough. We find ourselves in trouble because the model of the economy, that served us well in the past, no longer works in a technological society. That model believed work bestowed dignity […]

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Lesson 7: Balance and Moderation

Lesson 7: Balance and Moderation

The first thing mentioned by my class in Montgomery County, Maryland was how the Rule mandated treating work tools just as meticulously as worship articles. The group was surprised that a monastic community would think work was as important as worship. One of the members referred to the 31st article that reads, “Regard all utensils […]

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Lesson 6: Humility

Lesson 6: Humility

My first response to Sister Joan remains that she seems to be writing about the self-evident. My second is she confronts exactly what is wrong with our present society. Her take on humility that she designates as the lost virtue is a perfect example. Once you examine what she, Benedict, and Jesus say about humility, […]

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Lesson 3: New Models

Lesson 3: New Models

A change seems to have taken place in the relationship between church and society. Although it was long coming, most of us did not pay much attention until the recent presidential campaign. It was taken for granted that church and society had a congenial working relationship. Many even spoke of the church as the cutting edge […]

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Lesson 1: The First Christian Community

Lesson 1: The First Christian Community

A number of my friends are raising questions about Christian community. They are finding our present forms fail to enrich, nourish, or inspire their lives. Many are frustrated after having tried one congregation after another. Our conversations have convinced me that they are not antichurch. They are genuinely seeking to live with integrity in a […]

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