There is a huge hole at the heart of our post-Christian and increasingly individualistic Western society: a breakdown of community between people and with God. Most people’s daily experience in family, work and church is far from the hopes that the word “community” raises. Many are beginning to doubt whether human relationships can work at all: everyone has many “contacts” but there is a real poverty of genuine relationships. Many also doubt whether true “community” is possible; they substitute their clique for it and keep a cool distance to others. Yet, there is a deep hunger for open and honest relationships – but for many, it’s hard to imagine how that could possibly work in day-to-day life.
A transforming social dynamic began in the first Christian fellowships: people came together there and lived in community in spite of very different life situations; they practiced spiritual equality and fellowship. The first churches were places of refuge in the midst of a very hard and often cruel daily life. They were not only marked by their new and dynamic ideas but also by the deep reality of their common life. People found in them acceptance, peace and security – a spiritual home.
We want to help create places from which the bright light of hope radiates into the darkness of the world.
(Friedrich von Bodelschwingh)
We want to
… meet each other as people with histories – listen to one another’s stories, ask questions, and learn from one another. We want to put our stories together like pieces of a beautiful mosaic.
… gain hope – to overcome the barriers of our loneliness; to watch a new world being born.
… to imagine a new future – can our histories and stories – when put together – change the course of history?
Why the name?
“Philosophia” is the ancient Greek word for “love of wisdom”. (That was the original meaning of the English word “philosophy”).
Aristotle, the great teacher of the ancient world, said that “all philosophy begins with a sense of wonder”. That can also be a place where faith begins. We dream of a fellowship of friends who share a common wonder at the person of Jesus, their Master and Teacher, a company of the committed whose imagination and hearts have been captured by his story and what he did for all humanity.
We dream of pursuing an alternative way of doing “church”, of a fellowship whose roots are deep in early Messianic Judaism and vintage Christianity, a band of believers who want to grow as a community of faith, to listen carefully to each other and be open to multiple points of view while anchored firmly to the foundation.
We dream of a band of pilgrims who are together on a spiritual quest, making their way to the “heavenly city” and taking many they meet along the way with them.
We want to imagine a new future – we dream of being a workshop for the future! Could our stories – brought together – change the course of history?
We want to “take thoughts captive” for Christ and challenge the thinking or our time from a circle of faith.
27. May 2004
Founding of Philosophia International in Boise, Idaho, U.S.A.
4. December 2005
Founding of Philosophia Europa e. V. in Berlin, the “younger sister”of Philosophia International.
28. December 2005
Signing of the contract for the purchase of “Haus Nazareth” in Berlin from the former owners, a Roman Catholic community of religious sisters in Steglitz.
1. May 2006
Philosophia Europa e.V. moves into “Haus Nazareth”; the remodeling of the Haus begins.
Remodeling “Haus Nazareth”, beginnings of the student work.