• Loving Life on the Margins: The Story of Agape Community

    National Catholic Review on Agape’s Legacy Book: Loving Life on the Margins

    What happens when you live life 'horizontally, not vertically' Order The Book Today! Aug 19, 2020 by Bill Mitchell Brayton and Suzanne Belote Shanley at Agape Community's St. Francis Day event in October 2019 (David Legg) LOVING LIFE ON THE MARGINS: THE STORY OF THE AGAPE COMMUNITY By Suzanne Belote Shanley and Brayton Shanley 336 pages; Haley's $24.95 For progressive Catholics of a certain age, Suzanne and Brayton Shanley have mapped an array of roads perhaps once considered, but for the most part not taken. Those of us who stepped out into the world in the '60s and '70s were presented with such radical role models as the Berrigans, Elizabeth McAllister and Dorothy Day. As compelling as their stories were, most of us admired them and moved on. The Shanleys chose the bolder option, making one decision after another to follow in those footsteps and pursue a life that had them, in the words of their book title, loving life on the margins. Over the years, their work has included persistent resistance to the forces they see as inconsistent with the Gospels, including war, systemic racism and desecration of the planet. But Loving Life on the Margins: The Story of the Agape Community is more than a story of what they would do. It's a tale of how they would live. One way to avoid paying taxes that help support the military, for example, is to live so simply you have no taxable income. Theirs also is a narrative of unconventional choices rendered all the more compelling by the previously unthinkable disruptions forced by the pandemic. Not to mention the upheaval almost certain to accompany the climate crisis before long. Making reference to Luke 12:56, they describe their book as an "attempt to do what Jesus asked: 'Interpret the present time,' " expressing the hope that readers "will find in the Agape story something worthy of interpretation as a commentary on the lineage and future of small faith communities like ours." They eschew the term "memoir" as "too self-referential" and instead present themselves as "co-authors of a spiritual journal," with alternating entries by each of them. It was the late '80s when they set up Agape as an intentional community on 34 acres in rural western Massachusetts, a center where hundreds of volunteers have gathered since to help build and sustain the place and its work. The Shanleys adopted a lifestyle they describe on the Agape Community's website as an effort "to create and to preserve a morally coherent life in fidelity to our faith and to the calling of people of all faiths." Read the entire review on the NCR website!


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  • agape workday volunteers

    Workday 2020 Recap

    They came, all five of them, and a new intern, Adam, along with Olivia and Teresa and our…


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  • David Tall Pine White

    “We will teach our Indigenous Ways At the University of the Wild” David “Tall Pine” White, Nipmuc Language Keeper Special Message from the University…


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  • Stations of the Cross of Nonviolence in a Pandemic

    Background Information: Stations of the Cross of Nonviolent Love at Boston’s Statehouse since 1984 For…


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  • God and the Ego Mind in a Pandemic

    God and the Ego Mind in a Pandemic by Brayton Shanley Novel Corona Virus has spread from Wuhan China…


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  • Agape Legacy/Lineage Book Tour: Loving Life on the Margins: The Story of the Agape Community

    With our plans for an ongoing travel with Agape’s new book, Loving Life on the Margins: The Story of the Agape Community, we named the tour, “The Agape Legacy…


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  • Legacy Book Tour: Spring 2020

      Suzanne and Brayton visited….


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  • Advent Evening 2019

    Around forty people joined us for this year’s Advent Evening celebration. With song and chant throughout the evening, we stood in silence around the advent fire, witnessed a roleplay…


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  • The Marvelous Did Happen (Servant Song of Winter 2020 is Released!)

    What follows is the front page of this most recent Servant Song. To find the rest, click here for…


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  • The Hope of Divine Love for a Threatened Planet

    by Brayton Shanley We are going to a place in history that we have never been before. Old systems are dying but not without a fight. Authoritarian, political systems based…


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