Over the past 50 years the ancient ministry of soul tending has re-emerged within and beyond the church after centuries of being lost and forgotten. ANAM CARA offers training in listening for God's presence and work in our own lives and in the lives of others, within and beyond the church.
ANAM CARA invites the person learning Spiritual Direction to listen to story and to see the scriptures as revealing the Great Story of God, in which our constricted story - this side of Eden - is held. We learn to listen for what story we are living in. Story-listening of this kind is missional, can happen anywhere, and with all persons - formally and informally. Story-listening in community is monastic - as we become contemplative in our presence to Jesus who says, "Where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them." (Mt. 18:20)
There is a shift in awareness that church is no longer serving the deep, embodied way of Jesus. A deep spiritual hunger seeks something more, something ancient, and something that will hold - be tangible, embodied. Virtual reality and virtual connection is lacking in substance. This something ancient prompts a turn toward the early church (pre-Constantine), and to the monastic, to some kind of rule of life, some kind of order. Just as in that era, small communities arose with a desire to pattern their life around the way of Jesus, so today community houses are emerging with a similar desire.