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An intentional community is any group of people who make a conscious and purposeful decision to live a common life as Christians. A Christian community is more than a collection friends but a group of people who seek to support each other just as we read in Acts 2:44 "All believers were together and held all things in common".  Such communities are places of reconciliation and hospitality where prayer is the beating heart. At their best they are full of real people and are places which acknowledge wounds and weaknesses rather than paper over them. From such communities comes up over time a deeper joy. 

Typically when Christians do this they make a special commitment with promises or vows. This may be for a set period or for life. In this community our commitment liturgy asks three things. 

  • Will you live according to a rule of life based on simplicity, devotion and rootedness, grounded in humility?
  • Will you seek to deepen your prayer life, to grow in discipleship and serve local people with joy?
  • Will you open your heart to a common life seeking in all things to foster shared prayers, shared meals and a shared vision for the year ahead?

 

Often members agree to a set of values and practices in what is called a rule of life. In our community, the rule of life is called The Extra Mile and is loosely based on daily practices to help us live the Christian life.  

Intentional community can be experienced as people living together under the same roof. It is also possible to live in community as a dispersed fellowship. In our pattern of things we are also offering the possibility of people sharing a common rule via an online community. None of these three forms of community as superior to each but offer those seeking community to explore a deeper discipleship in a context which is suitable, appropriate and realistic. 

 

St Peters Foundation has a particular focus on helping such communities be a blessing not only to themselves but also the local church. At present, we are working closely with the parishes of the benefice of Salcombe, Malborough with South Huish as well as some churches in Plymouth which operate in an urban priority context.