Many of you may be familiar with the Bruderhof Communities and their many collections of readings for the Christian Year. Roots of the movement can be found in Anabaptism and in the Radical Reformation of the early 1500s, when thousands left the institutional churches to live a life of sharing and nonviolence in Christian communities. The modern Bruderhof, one of dozens of communes that sprang up in Germany in the aftermath of the First World War, was founded in 1920. Eberhard Arnold, his wife Emmy, and her sister Else von Hollander were the first members. As they describe their mission, they say the following:
“In a world of loneliness and discord, countless people long for community, and our life together is an expression of that longing. Our goal is to overcome the isolation and fragmentation that mark our time by fighting their root cause—selfishness—in ourselves. Working and eating communally, sharing houses and cars, raising our children together, and helping each other in the care of disabled and aged loved ones, we seek to live an organic life that addresses the needs of every individual yet still serves a greater common good.”
Two things worth connecting with through the Bruderhof Community: (1) their ‘Daily Dig‘ which is a daily email ‘quote of the day’ that has a depth and breadth of resources worth attending to – what they call ‘caffiene for the conscious’, and (2) their online library and free eBook downloads. As part of their ministry to get thinking and passionate people actually ‘thinking and passionate.’ The recent eBook they are offering is ‘The Gospel in Dostoyevsky’ which is a wonderful collection of key points in Dostoyevsky’s writing that develop his theology of Christ and the Church. If you have been put off by (1) Russian literature, and (2) huge 19th century novels, this is a great way to be introduced to the genius of his work.