Encountering Christ in Community and Creation
Welcome to the Society of St Columba’s website. Here you will be able to discover some of the life and activity that we are involved with. As a new monastic Christian community based at Chanctonbury, deep in the heart of the South Downs National Park, we are privileged to live in a visually stunning rural location at the end of a road that goes no where, a place were we arrive to begin again.
As a Christian community we are seeking to outwork a simple spiritual rhythm or lifestyle, a rhythm that consists of PRAYER, WORK, READING, PILGRIMAGE, SILENCE, SABBATH and investing into the geographical PLACE (Chanctonbury) itself.
When you arrive you will discover our old heritage (turn of the 19th century) 23 acre farmstead called St Columba’s Farmstead, that we are diligently restoring to its former glory. You may encounter some of our community busy digging and planting in the community garden or away under the Lebanese Cedar tree tending our fledgling five acre forest garden. Look a little further and you will bump into The Chanctonbury Flock, affectionally known as The Wild Ones – a mixed flock of idiosyncratic and precoscious rare breed Manx Loaghtan and Shetland sheep.
If you listen you will hear the thrumming of our bees, the high call of the Buzzards, Red Kites, the Yellowhammer’s lilting song or the choral bursts of the Nightingale and Skylark. Down in the hermitage field the wind plays a symphony on the old row of Populars where there is a deep peace to be encountered and swept up in.
If you decide to visit, there is plenty of space for you to come and contribute to reawakening our origins in God. Whether it is working on the land, finding space to retreat and be alone with God, or to reimagine how life could be lived, you would be most welcome. We hope you enjoy the St Columba’s website, get a feel for our life as a community and hope to see you soon.
May the peace of Christ rest upon you and all whom you know.
The Society of St Columba.