The Other Side of Joy: Religious Melancholy among the Bruderhof

Synopsis

This is a case study of one pietist religious group, the Bruderhof. A Christian brotherhood founded on Anabaptist and evangelical pietist doctrine, they practice community of goods, seeking to emulate the vision of the Apostolic church and fulfill the ethic of brotherhood taught in the Sermon on the Mount. Rubin offers compelling accounts of the lives of Bruderhof apostates who foundered over issues of faith, and relates these crises to the central tenets of Bruderhof theology, their spirituality, and community life.

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