Saturday night my mom, Kathryn, and I went to Regent University Theatre to watch the premiere of The Glory Man, a play written by Dennis J. Hassell about the founding of the Christian farming commune, Koinonia, by visionary Clarence Jordan and his wife, Florence. Like the early church in Acts, the community they set up on this "demonstration plot" allowed them to practice faith, stewardship, and brotherhood in concrete and often radical ways. Hassell focuses upon this last facet of their farm as he examines their impact on race relations in the area, for to the Jordans, brotherhood meant brotherhood in which humanity, not color, was the defining quality. As conflict escalates from the simmering bigotry of the surrounding farms and churches to crop burnings and shootings and even rape, Koinonia faces a relentless test of its faith and tenacity.
Koinonia still operates today, practicing fellowship, peace, and stewardship after over fifty years since its founding as a "demonstration plot for God's Kingdom." I was delighted to see that its members adhere to the principles of permaculture and sustainability in their production of pecans and cakes, and they have a wonderful selection of fair trade coffees to round out their catalog. Consider supporting this ministry (which has multiplied into other ministries you might be familiar with, like Habitat for Humanity, founded in 1968 as Koinonia Partnership Housing) with your Christmas giving this year. Here is Koinonia's website: www.koinoniapartners.org.