The 1960’s were a time of great destruction and creation in the world. Movements for civil rights, women, peace, environment and youth whipped up a great storm of change around the globe that is still in process. An evolving global spirit movement was birthed in the midst of this wild wind.
The people related to the Institute programs focused on creating signs of renewal in local communities, churches and social structures globally. They saw the key factor was the emergence of a new consciousness, a new spirit that would enable the emergence of transformed social structures. They saw themselves as a Global Spirit Movement and were sometimes referred to as the Guardians, the Blue Shirts (in India), Global Servant Force, Structural Revolutionaries, the League, the Invisible College and the New Church.
This Spirit Movement Collection provides a brief glimpse of a movement of people who threw themselves into releasing social and personal transformation in Century 20 in many shapes and forms to live, encourage and create new ways of being in Century 21. These memories and archival documents celebrate the wildness and passion created and lived by thousands of people from many countries around the world. It gives all those who care now and in the future permission to chase after windmills occasionally, to dream the impossible dream with oddball characters like Don Quixote, and to forge a just and sustainable society.
This movement invites everyone to live creative, conscious and caring lives and shares methods and approaches for doing just that.
~ adapted from Jeanette Stanfield’s Forward to Chronological History of Ecumenical Institute and Institute of Cultural Affairs 1952-1988, revised 2017
“History is created by “selves” who have models, worked together corporately to get it into history and thus altered the direction of history …and inviting others to follow.” B. Stanfield
Crocker, Joseph, Report on the Global Movement, July 22, 1974
The Academy: An intensive residential eight-week curriculum of intellectual and practical methods toward building a renewed church and society.
Several innovations of the basic curriculum of the Ecumenical Institute have been developed through the years that speak to more inclusive audiences, including Interior Mythos, Profound Journey Dialogue, and Shaping An Intentional Life of Service (SAILS).
The Local Church Experiment: An extensive six-year experiment of corporate pastorates to train and renew congregations for ministering to social needs within their parishes.
Guardians-a caring group of business and professional laypersons who contributed their wisdom, business acumen, professional expertise, time and financial support to the work of this growing new movement.