The Franciscan Vow of Poverty as an Ancient and Modern Resource for Innovative Missional Practice


  • James Fox-Robinson



This paper explores the experience of those choosing to live a monastic lifestyle and analyses these experiences as potential missional practice in our time. Questionnaires, surveys, and interviews were used to correlate the language, symbols, understanding, and experience of participants. Using the data in an imaginative way, I offer a conversation between: a pilgrim interested in monastic practices, Clare as a facilitator, and composite characters that were created using the research data. These characters’ conversations share and critique the lived experience of the research participants. This imaginative conversation also creatively provides a literature review. Drawing on ideas from fantasy fiction, the analysis and results of the research are explored in a fantasy world called “Freedom.” The research demonstrates the cyclical process of contemplative action. Innovative missional practice (by individuals and the Church as a whole) becomes an ethos by which to live. Defining missional spirituality in this manner deepens the Church’s understanding of “mission” in our time.

Author Biography

James Fox-Robinson

James Fox-Robinson graduated an MA in Ministry, Mission, and Theology (Distinction) through the Church Mission Society in 2020. He is a Third Order Franciscan interested in how monastic practice relates to contemporary mission.He lives with his family in Durham, UK. His passion is the performing arts and he currently works as a university-based theatre practitioner.




How to Cite

Fox-Robinson, James. 2021. “The Franciscan Vow of Poverty As an Ancient and Modern Resource for Innovative Missional Practice”. Ecclesial Futures 2 (2):73-98.