THE MISSION OF THE COMMUNITY
Present in 22 countries on 5 continents and numbering nearly 1,000 Brothers and Sisters, the family of St. John desires to be for Jesus in today’s Church what John was for Jesus in the Gospels. By placing the spirit of the Beloved Disciple in the context of the New Evangelization, the Congregation of St. John reaches out to young people by providing the milieu for their authentic personal growth and formation in our Catholic Faith.
ABOUT THE COMMUNITY
The members of the Community of Saint John seek to fully live the evangelical counsels of poverty, virginity, and obedience in a spirit rooted in the Gospel of St. John. Their spirit flows from three of the salient features of St. John’s holiness found in his Gospel.
First, St. John’s personal covenant with Jesus in the Eucharist is at the source of the Community’s silent adoration and liturgical prayer. This liturgy follows the monastic spirit, but its celebration is lightened because of the demands of the apostolic life, so that more time might be given to silent prayer in common.
Second, St. John’s personal covenant with Mary, mother and guardian of the growth of the divine life of Faith, Hope, and Charity in its members, and the divine milieu of contemplative life. Just as “the disciple took her into his home,” (John 19:27) this covenant is the foundation for the unity of fraternal charity lived in communal life.
Third, St. John’s personal covenant with St. Peter, found today in the person of the Holy Father: filial obedience to the Successor of Peter and to the Bishops in order to live the Church’s Tradition most faithfully and profoundly.
The members of the Family of St. John seek to give themselves to God without reserve for the salvation of souls. Such a total consecration of oneself to the Blessed Trinity can only be realized fully through the sacrifice of Christ, our High Priest, who offers himself as a holocaust victim of love of the Father on the Cross. For this reason, each member of the Family of St. John has at heart to strive to share in the mystery of the priesthood of Christ as profoundly as possible. This priesthood, which is the most precious gift given by Christ to His Church, is brought to completion (cf. Col. 1:24) in two ways: the royal priesthood of the faithful and the ministerial priesthood. By their religious life, all of the members of the Family of St. John seek to follow St. John’s example: they seek to follow the Lamb wherever he goes (Rev. 14), even to the Cross where he accomplishes his sacerdotal work as Beloved Son. This contemplative priesthood calls the members of the Family of St. John to constantly seek the Face of Christ so as to communicate his light and love to those to whom they have been sent. In and through this, the Community strives to glorify the Father with Christ and help today’s world rediscover a sense of adoration and fraternal charity.
Another key dimension of the spirit of the Family of St. John is found in their call to constantly seek to know and live in the truth as fully as possible. To accomplish this, members strive above all else to know and love the Word of God as found in the living Tradition of the Church (especially the Fathers of the church and St. Thomas Aquinas) and presented by the Church’s Magisterium. This desire to receive God’s revelation both for its own sake, and in a way that will enable them to dialogue with others, opens the members of the Community to engage in a genuinely philosophical inquiry, centered on the human person. This philosophical formation, done in the footsteps of Aristotle and with reference to St. Thomas Aquinas, does not neglect the major modern-day problems that confront Christians today, especially the various forms of atheism. And yet, this rigorous formation in Theology and Philosophy is firstly undertaken with a view to communicating the mystery of our Divine Savior in its fullness to a world in desperate need of his saving truth. In this way, each member of the Community seeks to respond to Christ’s mission to “present the patrimony of the faith to men of our time… in an understandable and persuasive fashion” (Evangelii Nuntiandi, 3).