Review: Cave, Refectory, Road: Monastic Rhythms for Contemporary Living

Cave, Refectory, Road: Monastic Rhythms for Contemporary LivingCave, Refectory, Road: Monastic Rhythms for Contemporary Living by Ian Adams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Although a short 100 pages, this book has much to offer those seeking to authentically live out their baptismal call to life, mission and ministry. Drawing on the example and models of monastic life and applying them to life outside the monastic boundaries, Ian Adams presents a range of possibilities for those seeking that deeper commitment, which in times past may have required entry into a monastic community.

Adams, himself a founder of a ‘new expression’ of monastic life in the English city of Oxford, does not lay out one particular way of proceeding, but rather provides insights for consideration, potential modes of living that are authentic, grounded firmly in the desire to be in relationship with God and others, and driven by something that might not immediately be nameable. For the committed seeker, the insights of Adams – and indeed, the insights of the monastic/religious life within the great tradition of Christianity – provide things to contemplate, possibilities to explore, and a means of finding that which is being sought.

One of the great advantages of this book is that Adams has walked the walk and is not merely talking the talk. His own journey, glimpses of which can be discovered throughout the text, provides reassurance that finding that sought is entirely possible. All that is required is an openness to what God might have in store for the seeker…and a readiness to take the first step.

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