The Community of St Frideswide is a network of prayer and mission communities around the city of Oxford with a vision to be part of the equipping and renewal of the life of prayer and mission of the Church, especially (but not exclusively!) among young adults.
The second year of the Community of St Frideswide began at the end of September 2019, when four new members made their commitments for the first time, and four continuing members renewed their’s to the community. Over the past year we have developed a rhythm for our gatherings during the year which focuses on the Rule of Life for the first few months (until Christmas) and then alternates between ‘Closed’ (Community only) devotional gatherings and ‘Open’ (All welcome, especially those considering joining us in September 20) meetings where a guest speaker presents something relevant to our community life. All of our gatherings end with our community form of Compline.
Since January our closed gatherings have taken a beatitude each fortnight to meditate upon and then put into practice as part of our rhythm of life. The first fortnight looking at drawing our attention to being Poor in Spirit, the second at mourning etc. Members take turns to lead and guide the discussions as well as hosting the evenings, and reviewing how our lived experiments of practicing the beatitudes has worked over the previous fortnight.
Our open meetings have heard from CSMV Oblate Michelle Eyre about her Discovering Prayer ministry and what community life as an oblate is like. We have also heard from those forming residential communities for people transitioning from a life of rough sleeping or long term imprisonment, and thought more about how liturgy informs devotion. In addition to these regular community gatherings, we also occasionally meet with other communities, and take part in various mission and prayer initiatives for our various church communities. Everything from running a church prayer evening or a prayer space at a village fete to Ashes to Go at the Oxford railway station. We are looking forward to our second retreat of the year at White Lodge in May.
Looking ahead we are investigating ways of making possible a residential expression of our community as we are currently all dispersed. We are also meeting with people who are expressing interest in joining us at our next commitment service in late September this year. Some of our current members will be moving away from the Oxford area over the summer, and we will be thinking of ways to help those who move on stay connected in some way with community life.
CSMV support the Community through prayer, contact and finacially. Find out more about the Community of St Fridewide.