Väckelsens kloster - en studie av den monastiska vändningen i frikyrkligheten
Revivalist Monasteries - a Study of the Monastic Turn in the Free Church
This essay explores what I call ”the monastic turn” in the free church and evangelical tradition. The specific purpose of the investigation has been to sketch the challenges posed to the monastic turn from previous research and my own reading of a number of authors connected to the phenomena and against this background analyze the portrayal of monastic tradition in the writings of Peter Halldorf so as to see in what extent it comes forth as in continuity or discontinuity with his own free church tradition. My theoretical tools for analysis have been Charles Taylor's theory on the motives for the dismantling of the monastic tradition within the protestant reformations as well as ecclesiological free church identifiers. The study shows how the monastic turn within the free church stays in continuity with the free church tradition as the portrayal of monastic tradition seems to take shape as a reinforcement of free church identities. As such, it is a kind of ”reformed” monastic tradition that is presented within this turn. I argue further that differences in what aspects of the tradition are put forward by the different authors reveal how the monastic turn inherits an ecclesiological tension inherent in Swedish free church tradition regarding whether the ”true” church is an invisible community of believers, based on common emotional experiences, or a distinct social body with its own institutions in society. However, the monastic turn also poses a challenge to the free church tradition, especially in Halldorf's portrayal of monastic life as inevitably connected to a celibate life.