Developing a Resource Guide for Soul Friends

Please pray for and participate with the Abbey of St. John Presbyter Council as we develop a Resource Guide for Soul Friends, that it will become a valuable resource, not just for our Abbey, but for the whole of Basileia and the larger Church. Thank you.

Please pray for and participate with the Abbey of St. John Presbyter Council as we develop a Resource Guide for Soul Friends, that it will become a valuable resource, not just for our Abbey, but for the whole of Basileia and the larger Church. Thank you.

A curriculum development initiative of the Abbey of St. John Presbyter Council

On July 17, 2014 the Abbey of St. John Presbyter Council (Boyd W. Morris, Todd Colister and John Hunt) initiated writing a draft of a Resource Guide for Soul Friends. Continual editing of this project will be carried out below on this page until this Guide is completed and posted in the Resources section. All Basileians and expressions of Basileia are invited to participate in the development of this Guide via the comments section at the bottom of this page and then adopt and adapt the final version for their respective situations.

The end product envisioned will consist of

  1. A clear set of discipleship objectives for each of our lifestyle practices.
  2. A brief commentary on each objective.
  3. A list of resources for each practice. 

The Constitutional reference point for this project is pages 46-53 of the printed version of The Constitution of Basileia, Part 3 of the section, "Catechism and Our Charism."

And so we pray to the Lord that the spirit of this prayer will become embodied in this project:

To whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life 
and we have believed and have come to know
that You are the Holy One of God.

Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ,
King of endless glory.

(Celtic Daily Prayer, p. 18)



Part 1: Discipleship Objectives for Each Lifestyle Practice

Below is a working draft of five questions for each of the three practices that seek to drill down into the underlying story behind our five lifestyle disciplines. Soul Friends can use these questions as a guide to help focus in on core, foundational issues that any Basileian needs to be willing and able to live out in each area. In light of each question, Soul Friends should first ask themselves, "Is this person I'm discipling willing and able to give an authentic and unique answer to this question by how they live that is both true to their own individual charism and to the collective charism of Basileia?"

Our goal with these questions is to bring into focus the intersection of each our our individual stories with the cosmic sweep of the story of Christus Victor and His Church's quest to destroy evil and restore all things ruined by evil, remembering along the way that there is no theosis without kenosis. 

In that cultivating colonies of heaven is a central metaphor for us, therefore, each of our disciplines and their related practices can be regarded as ways of developing the kind of spirituality essential to being effective colonists of the Kingdom of God. If we––individually and collectively–– are to fulfill our call to replace the Fallen World System with the Kingdom of God, then we need the convergence of the priestly spirituality of Ezra, the prophetic spirituality of Malachi and the kingly spirituality of Nehemiah to come together as one so that we can build the City of God. Only in this way can we be a truly kingdomcultural alternative expression of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.

Thus, Soul Friends don't necessarily need to ask their disciples each of these questions directly merely to test their intellectual knowledge, while doing that is fine as far as it goes. It's just that doing that alone doesn't go far enough. The more wholistic objective that Soul Friends are expected to aim for is to be confident that each of their disciples––each in their own unique way, true to who they are called to be and what they are called to do––can demonstrate the answers to these questions in their lifestyle in a manner that is faithful to the spirit and pattern of Basileia's charism.



Practices of Journeying

 

Pray Eucharistically

  1. What does it mean that as Worshipers we practice Eucharistic Worship in a priestly way?
  2. What are the three streams of the Church and why is weaving together their priestly, prophetic and kingly dimensions essential to "running our own city"?
  3. How are these three streams rooted in the three forms or modes of divine revelation and how do they converge in Eucharistic Worship?
  4. How does the five-fold covenant pattern of the Liturgy give expression to the Epic Story of Paradise lost and regained?
  5. In contrast to a Vocational Assembly or a Community Assembly, what is a Festival Assembly and in what way does your participation in Festival Assembly Eucharistic Worship replace Babylon with Jerusalem?

Pray Daily

  1. What does it mean that as Global Pilgrims we practice Daily Prayer in a prophetic way?
  2. What is the Daily Office and where did it come from?
  3. What is the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) and how do we use it?
  4. What other supplementary resources are helpful for daily prayer, such as Celtic Daily Prayer? How can these best be used in relation to the RCL?
  5. What forums do we have for the Daily Office that you can participate in or that you could host for others to participate in?

Pray Contemplatively

  1. What does it mean that as Contemplatives we practice Contemplative Prayer in a kingly way?
  2. What is Contemplative Prayer and how does it aid in our restoration by grace in the image and likeness of God?
  3. What is a contemplative lifestyle and how are you living it?
  4. What does your daily practice of Contemplative Prayer look like?
  5. How are you progressing in the high calling of experiencing Christ's presence both when you withdraw from your mission in the Fallen World System in worship and when you engage the Fallen World System?

 

Practices of Assembling

Belong to Believe

  1. What does it mean that as Soul Friends we love and help others to belong in order to believe in a priestly way?
  2. What is the origin and meaning of the term "Soul Friend"?
  3. What is the origin and kingdomcultural meaning of "belong to believe"?
  4. Name the categories of membership in Basileia and the way that each member experiences what it means to belong in order to believe.
  5. What does it practically mean for you to have a Soul Friend and to be a Soul Friend to someone else?

Cultivate Colonies of Heaven

  1. What does it mean that as Celtic Community-Builders we cultivate colonies of heaven on earth in a prophetic way?
  2. What is a colony of heaven on earth?
  3. In what ways is (are) the particular expression(s) of Basileia that you are a part of a colony of heaven here in the twenty-first century?
  4. In what sense is (are) the expression(s) of Basileia that you are a part of functioning as the Church as a City as represented by the Basileia logo?
  5. How specifically are you building the City of God?

Guard Thin Places

  1. What does it mean that as Forerunners we create thin places in a kingly way?
  2. What is a thin place and why is it essential to creating the alternative world that we call the Kingdom of God?
  3. What is the "Council of the Lord" and how is this foundational to how we create thin places?
  4. What are the four offices of Church governance and what does it mean to you that they each have equal value and different function?
  5. How specifically do you engage in Church governance in the Council of the Lord and how do you relate to others in each of the four offices when doing so?
     

Practices of Listening

Follow the Church Year

  1. What does it mean that as Storytellers we follow the Lectionary in rhythm with the Church Year in a priestly way?
  2. What particular role do each of the seven seasons of the Church Year have in giving expression to the Epic Story of Paradise lost and regained? 
  3. What are your favorite seasons and holydays of the the Church Year and why?
  4. In what ways are you uniquely gifted as a teller of the Epic Story?
  5. What is your individual story and how is it now being interwoven with the Epic Story of Christ and His Church as told in rhythm of the Church Year?

Interpret the Word

  1. What does it mean that as Pattern-Keepers we interpret the Word according to the Apostolic Rule of Faith in a prophetic way?
  2. What is the Apostolic Rule of Faith and how are such things as the Table of Contents of the Bible, the Creed, the Liturgy, the Church Year and the Constitution of Basileia all practical expressions of it?
  3. What is the One-Source View of authority and how does it enable you to know for certain what the Apostolic Rule of Faith is and then, according to the principle of Sola Scriptura, release you and the Church to be kingdomcultural?
  4. What is the Two-Source View of authority and how does it, a) according to the principle of "Solo" Scriptura, give rise to subcultural expressions of the Church, and b) according to the principle of Qualified Infallibility, give rise to countercultural expressions of the Church?
  5. How do you embody the Word, that is, apply the Apostolic Rule of Faith, in your vocational calling?

Observe our Constitution

  1. What does it mean that as Overcomers we observe Basileia's Constitution in a kingly way?
  2. What is Basileia's charism and how does the Constitution help release it instead of restrict it?
  3. How does the Constitution of Basileia serve Basileia to more faithfully be an expression of the Church that functions as a court of truth instead of as a source of truth?
  4. How does Basileia's Constitution serve to release you rather than restrict you?
  5. If there is some part of the Constitution that you or others think needs to be amended, how do you go about doing that?
     

Practices of Governing

Practice Open Communion

  1. What does it mean that as Sentinels we welcome all whom Christ authorizes to come to the Table in a priestly way?
  2. What is the Table?
  3. What are the covenantal boundaries that separate the Kingdom of God from the Fallen World System and how do you initially cross into the Kingdom (particularly in Baptism) and then remain within its boundaries?
  4. What is lawful excommunication and what is unlawfully excommunication?
  5. What role does faith play and how do you experience being encountered by the real presence of the Lord Jesus Christ in the Eucharist in general and in receiving the bread and wine in particular?

Make Consensus Decisions

  1. What does it mean that as Friends of God we make consensus decisions in the Council of the Lord in a prophetic way?
  2. What is the Council of the Lord in light of the Hebrew word sode, the New Testament word mysterion and the Latin word sacrament?
  3. What is "the safety of the counsel of many" and how does it relate to the Apostolic Rule of Faith?
  4. How does it practically work to give equal value but different weight to each person's contribution in the consensus decision making process?
  5. What types of consensus decisions are made by Presbyter Councils, Deacon Councils, and Missional Councils and how can you go about contributing to the decisions made by each type of council?

Create Wealth, Tithe and Give

  1. What does it mean that as Stewards we create wealth, tithe and give in a kingly way?
  2. What are the three kinds of tithes and how do they each relate to the three kinds of assemblies that comprise the City of God?
  3. What are offerings and how do they differ from tithes? 
  4. What does it mean to reverse the curse by creating wealth (verses just making money) and how are you called to do this in a way that confirms the covenant?
  5. What does the City of God look like to you when its government is funded by the three kinds of tithes and its wealth creating citizens are giving offerings? 
     

Practices of Serving

Offer Hospitality

  1. What does it mean that as Hosts we serve the Church and the world by offering hospitality to Basileians, to the Church beyond Basileia and to those beyond the Church in a priestly way?
  2. How does the Basileian way of hospitality demolish denominationalism?
  3. How does the Basileian way of hospitality demolish the false dichotomies that enslave people and then equip and empower them to live in a kingdomcultural way?
  4. How does the Basileian way of hospitality demolish gnostic practices in all forms of governance (individual, family, Church and state) that isolate, divide and unrighteously condemn people?
  5. Who do you offering hospitality to and how do you do it?

Advance the Kingdom Vocationally

  1. What does it mean that as Ambassadors we advance kingdomcultural Christendom through our vocations in a prophet way?
  2. What is kingdomcultural Christendom in contrast to that which is subcultural and countercultural?
  3. What are Chapters and Vocational Societies and how do they serve to cultivate colonies of heaven on earth?
  4. What Chapter or Chapters do your Vocational Tithes go to?
  5. In what ways are you or can you become active with one or more Chapters?

Travel to the Edges

  1. What does it mean that as Voluntary Exiles we travel to the edges of established expressions of Christendom in a kingly way?
  2. What does it mean to heavenize earth?
  3. What does it mean for you to go into the desert, like Jesus, to exhaust evil in order to a) destroy evil and b) to restore all things ruined by evil?
  4. How do we as Basileians collectively and how do you individually, like the Celtic saints, save civilization?
  5. In what ways do you, as a kingdom colonist, dare to imagine being involved in expanding the Empire (i.e., Kingdom) of God?

(This is a work in progress. Please join in and contribute to this process in whatever way you can in the comments section below. Thank you.)