First Things - On the Square: Business and the Way of the Cross James R. Rogers
A comment in a Huffington Post article on the “new monasticism” caught my eye a few months back.
“Nobody wants their kid to get interested in new monasticism, ” joked Ben, a young seminarian from Michigan when he arrived at The Simple Way for a visit, “They want them to become businessmen. ”
This joke is an exaggeration of what many Christian parents want for their children—the dreaded expectation that the child pursue a “practical college major” that leads seamlessly to an ordinary, bourgeois life and career. Nonetheless, the joke would not be a joke without the sneer at business, as if the pursuit of a vocation in business necessarily means the embrace of a lesser form of the Christian life.
While not all of the folks associated with The Simple Way necessarily
share young Ben’s opinion, the idea that being a monastic (whether old
or new) is godly while being a businessperson is worldly reflects a
widely held belief among Christians. And that is really too bad,
particularly in this economy.
While I would be loath to argue that the pursuit of business is superior to the pursuit of monasticism, I nonetheless would insist that business vocations do not necessarily entail a lesser form of Christian life. Indeed, Christian discipleship can be quite meaningfully pursued through vocations in business. ...