The Brotherhood of Saint Gregory is a Christian Community of The Episcopal Church, its Communion Partners, and the worldwide Anglican Communion, whose members follow a common rule and serve the church on parochial, diocesan, and national levels. Members — clergy and lay, without regard to marital status — live individually, in small groups, or with their families. They support themselves and the community through their secular or church-related work, making use of their God-given talents in the world while not being of the world. The trust that all labor and life can be sanctified is summed up in the community’s motto: Soli Deo Gloria, To God Alone the Glory.
Flexibility is crucial in the ministry of the Brotherhood. Each member is encouraged to develop his gifts and talents under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the care and direction of the community. Brothers work in parishes as liturgists, musicians, librarians, artists, visitors to the poor and the sick, administrators, sextons, teachers, guild members, and clergy. On diocesan and national levels, brothers serve in a number of administrative and pastoral capacities. Many of those in secular employment continue the servant theme, and work as teachers, nurses and administrators. The aim is always to follow Saint Gregory the Great as “servants of the servants of God” — whether in church or society.
from Southside Friar
by Bo Alexander Armstrong, BSG
It took Jeanne McNulty many years to understand her vocation. It was confusing and frustrating at times. She began with great enthusiasm, completing formation training in a Franciscan convent. But as the day for her first profession of vows approached she knew that something wasn’t right. She remained faithful to the call of God and soon left the convent.
Jeanne would later serve with a community of Franciscan Friars, Nuns and laypeople, living and working among the poor in the inner city of Chicago. That was closer to her vision of “being poor among the poor” but she needed more time and space for solitude and prayer. To fully live into her vocation she would have to find a place to do both.
The journey ultimately led to the mountains of rural West Virginia where she founded a Franciscan hermitage. Jeanne devotes much of her time to prayer and solitude but also faithfully ministers to her neighbors, giving special attention to the poor. It’s a unique vocation and one that doesn’t readily fit into traditional categories. Perhaps Orville, one of her neighbors, described it best. He once told her, “Jeanne many folks around here do not know why you are living all alone down there on Colt Run [Road], but I do.” When she asked him “why?” he responded “You are down there for us”.