Baptist Monasteries. NOT an oxymoron.

Graeme and Oz just arrived from the Holy Transfiguration Monastery in Victoria, Australia to hang with us here at Ngatiawa Contemporary Monastery. They are Baptists and they are monks. They even wear habits. 

We had a chat about Baptist monastic movements. Some of the noteworthy and historic Baptist monasteries that have made their radar include the famous Ephrata Community in Pennsylvania, the Baptist movement in Georgia (the country, not the state) which is basically monastic, and a few Baptist monasteries in Africa. Also the Seattle crowd and Northumbria, although not Baptist, made the conversation.

They describe the Holy Transfiguration Monastery as being somewhere in the middle of old-school monasteries and nu-monasticism. It started in the 1970’s in the suburbs of Geelong (Breakwater) and has recently moved out to the rural area where they are reconfiguring, [ transfiguring?? 😉 ] themselves. HT was formally accepted into the Baptist communion a few years ago as well as the BWA. It took the monastery 37 flipp’n years to be acknowledge by the mainstream evangelical church. I am hoping newer monasteries will be embraced sooner than that. 


Related on TSK: Read what I wrote about Baptist Monasteries in 2003 regarding the Southern Baptist (BGCT) embracing a monastery in Austin, Texas, which I visited that year and enjoyed a very well hopped and well brewed beer.


Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


  • Phil Nellis says:

    Totally interested. Who did you allude to in Seattle? Are there Baptist Monastic groups in Seattle?

  • PrayerPunk says:

    Baptist monks? I love it! I’m a Franciscan who lives deep in Southern Baptist country in Texas, and I have yet to meet anyone outside the Catholic Church who even knows what a Christian monk is. They seem to think all monks are Asian and are warriors. Friar Tuck is the only monk they seem to remember. Anyway, I can’t wait to tell my brothers about this.

  • Dana R says:

    There are also Evangelical Monks although not in community. I believe they are in Washington State. They are for “born again ” or Evangelical Christians you do not have to leave your home or job to be one of them. They have a page on the internet but they are very biblical. If someone who is Baptist and is truly interested in being a Baptist Monk that may be a way to check out. They are not celibate, however they do have a cowl but I do not think it is mandatory to wear one, although some do wear it. Oh they do acknowledge Franciscans and Celtic Christians in their backgrounds. If anyone is interested just enter Evangelical Monks or Evangelical Monasticism.

  • It was started more than 40 years ago. What about current movement of HT in 2015? Is there new improvement? I still guess who they are, both of the names you have said earlier on this article – I want to make them as my friends.

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