[ACNS] Young people who want to spend a year living at Lambeth Palace, the London home of the Archbishop of Canterbury, as part of a “radical Jesus-centred community of prayer, study and serving local communities” have just under one week to submit their applications.
The Community of Saint Anselm was established by Archbishop Justin Welby as part of his commitment to a renewal of the monastic movement. The Community is an international group of young Christians, aged between 20 to 35, and includes both residential and non-residential members.
Application for membership is open to “any follower of Jesus, aged 20-35 and in good standing with their own church,” the Community of St Anselm says on its website. “We are hoping for a wonderfully broad range of members from across many different denominations and church traditions, and many different cultures.
“As we live and pray and serve together, we learn to hold our differences before God and love one another – to pursue reconciliation and understanding, in the context of our love for God and for the world around us.”
Members can be lay or ordained and can include those already living in Orders. “The only prerequisite is a willingness to be transformed and to learn,” the Community says. Applications are also welcome from married couples – but, if married, “both spouses should apply and participate fully in the Community.”
Members must also have “a level of English that allows the person to benefit from the teaching (lectures and reading), share and discuss matters of faith with others and participate in the social life of the Community” and be available between 1 September 2016 and 1 July 2017.
“I am only half way through this Year in God’s Time, and it has already been life transforming,” current residential member Louise Cox said. “Though intensely difficult at times, there is no place I’d rather be, sharing with the incredible young men and women I am honoured to call my brothers and sisters.
“Life in the Community is deeply seated in prayer. We have three services a day, and times of silent prayer to pursue our personal walk with Christ, seeking to grow in faith and knowledge, discerning God’s will for our lives. This centre of prayer is surrounded by regular study, group dialogue on social and theological issues. Outside of this rhythm we engage with the sick, the homeless, the young and the old through volunteering with London charities. We live in service to others, engaging with the suffering world around us.
“Our regular rhythm of prayer is punctuated by concentrated prayer for special events such as the recent Primates’ Meeting in Canterbury. Each day of the meeting we had the honour of gathering together in a constant vigil of prayer to support a process that meant so much to so many people,” she said.
“This experience was incredibly moving, and taught me a great deal of what it means to live in relationship with the worldwide Church and with God. We all have our part to play in nurturing our church, for some it is to meet, to talk and discuss, for me it was to stop and pray with a focused and intentional compassion over those striving to create a better, united future.”
Young people looking to spend a Year in God’s Time from September 2016 must apply by Monday 29 February for the residential track. Non-residential applicants must apply by mid-April. Full details about the criteria and the selection and application process can be found on the Community of St Anselm website.