Community of the Sisters of the Love of God
The Community of the Sisters of the Love of God is a contemplative community of women founded in 1906 within the Anglican Church, to witness to the priority of God, and to respond to the love of God for us, reflected in our love for God. Its members believe they are called to live a substantial degree of withdrawal from everyday life, devoting themselves to prayer in the belief that this prayer, rooted in the praise and worship of God, is essential for the peace and well-being of the world. The Sisters offer their lives to God in prayer and daily life together in Community, seeking to deepen their relationship with Jesus Christ and with one another. Sisters add the suffix SLG to their religious names.
The Community has always drawn upon Carmelite spirituality: life and prayer in silence and solitude is a very important dimension of the vocation. However, the Community also draws from other traditions, and the Rule is not specifically Carmelite. Another important ingredient is an emphasis on the centrality of Divine Office and Eucharist together in choir, inspired partly by the Benedictine way of life.
The Community is situated in England at the Convent of the Incarnation, Fairacres, Oxford. Formerly it had houses at Boxmoor, Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire, Burwash in East Sussex, and Staplehurst in Kent. One Sister lives at St Isaac’s Retreat, PO Box 93, Opononi 0445, Northland, Aotearoa/New Zealand, the last of a small group who moved there in 1995 to help establish a Diocesan retreat centre. The Reverend Mother is Sister Margaret Theresa SLG (assumed office June 2007). The community constructed a convent in the Holy Land in the 1930s, but this phase of work never came to fruition, owing to the outbreak of the second world war.
Members of the Community include the writer Sister Benedicta Ward SLG, translator and editor of The Sayings of the Desert Fathers and other works on the early and medieval Church. The Community has a small publishing house, SLG Press, which was founded in 1967 and produces a magazine twice a year, the Fairacres Chronicle, and short works on prayer and the spiritual life. Current titles include centuries-old classical spiritual texts, such as sayings from the early Christian monks in the desert, studies of significant spiritual writers like Julian of Norwich and George Herbert, and contemporary pamphlets providing guidance in the life of prayer. The publications of SLG Press sell all over the world.
Anglican Religious Life 2012-2013, Peta Dunstan, Canterbury Press, 2011. ISBN 978-1-84825-089-5.