Why We Live in Community

This is an article written by Christine Sine, fellow communitarian at the Mustard Seed House, about living in community.

Read full article at The Other Journal

My husband Tom and I live in a small intentional community in Seattle, Washington called the Mustard Seed House. We inhabit the middle floor of a triplex with a young family in the apartment above us and a young couple in the basement apartment below us. We get together at least once a week for dinner and sharing and once more for prayer, and we garden together once a month. We are keen on hospitality and have fun hosting people from around the world.

Recently we received a visit from Noemie, a young French woman researching sustainable community living in North America. She has already stayed with a cohousing community in Washington DC, an old order Amish community in Pennsylvania, and an income sharing commune in the woods of Virginia. She also met with Catholic workers and young Christians from the New Monasticism movement living in an intentional community.

Noemie did not grow up with a Christian background, but since her time in DC where she had opportunity to speak at length on how to live out the Gospel, she has become intrigued by the linkage between community and Christian living. Her recent experiences have convinced her that the only way to live out Christian faith authentically is in community with others.

I agree with Noemie. The pressures of our individualistic, consumer driven culture make many of us who call ourselves followers of Christ, functionally live as atheists. We may pray for a few minutes before we head off to work each morning and go to church on Sunday, but our faith has little impact on how we live the rest of the time. Our daily routines are increasingly not just disconnected from God’s rhythms and purposes, but in competition with them.

For us, as for our secular neighbors, “Normal is getting dressed in clothes you buy for work, driving through traffic in a car you are still paying for, in order to get to the job that you need so you can pay for the clothes, car and the house that you leave empty all day in order to afford to live in it.”

Read full article at The Other Journal

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