Conversatio morum...a useful Latin phrase

Conversatio morum is a Latin phrase often translated ‘conversion of life’ or ‘reformation of life’.

It is one of the three vows made by the Benedictine monk - the others being obedience and stability.

Obedience is the first virtue of Christ. It is listening in love to someone else so that what they want seems to you more important than your own will - as Jesus prayed in Gethsemane. Stability is a promise to persevere in this particular community - it is a promise of loyalty. ‘Conversatio morum’ is often left untranslated since it is hard to find English words that are adequate. It is a vow to a continual change of heart, a daily reshaping of the mind and heart according to God’s plan for us “. (Ampleforth Abbey)

This was explained on the blog of someone who has recently started to follow my blog. This follower speaks into some of the theological stances that this blog wrestles with, that I wrestled over because of a sermon preached in a particular church in Putney last year, in which there was a certain heckler - long-haired and leather-clad, that I continue to wrestle with, as I did this weekend just gone, in conversations with a passionate Christian who articulates his brother's homosexuality in terms of a gift to him because it enables him to connect with the 'other', 'the marginalised' and become an even deeper recipient of God's grace... so the wrestling and reflecting goes on, neither advanced nor set-back by the voice, was it mine? which spoke in an ethics essay of late on homosexuality and the Church of England. Welcome friend- dialogue will always enrich and cause us to grow.


Colin said...

Thank you Rachel. I appreciate your comment and your welcome. We truly are one body in Christ, and as we seek to discern our life and calling in him we're called to dwell deeper and deeper in his life within us. I truly believe this spills out into our wider life and relationships with others, and is the leaven in the loaf.

With my love and prayers as you walk closely with Jesus and seek to discern your way.


Rachel said...

Thank you Col - the dwelling deeper so that the waters bubble over indeed!

love Rachel


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A little background reading so we might mutually flourish when there are different opinions