New monastic communities are analogous to prophets having been carried out to the desert to hear from God. It’s sort of like the stars, from a city street you can’t see many stars even on a clear night, but from a country field or desert plain, the stars fill the sky. Removed from the chaos of life as we know it, a community can begin to hear and to re-learn the story God is spinning, and soon they begin to embody that story themselves, and soon others recognize something familiar in the community of folks living differently and eventually realize its a clearer picture of that same image in which they were created.
Is everyone called to a “monastic” life? Is everyone called to intentional community? Is everyone called to relocate to the abandoned places? No, but those who are called to serve remind the rest of us what we were created for and called to. The lives of a new monastic community serve as a prophetic voice speaking against the tumult of a world overpowering the still, small voice of God, and calling a people subsumed to become once again a “city set on a hill” in the midst of a world desperately seeking its purpose.