The Faith of the Kells-our example
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Abbot Fr Chris's Blog

The Faith of the Kells-our example

We have a responsibility as members of the Body of Christ to educate ourselves on what it is we believe, why we believe and then to place into practice that which we have learned, not just at the hands of others; but, from our own hands and minds as well. An example would be the supposed, and oft misused term "Celtic Christianity". There is no such thing as a Celtic Christianity. There were, ho...wever, and thanks be to God, Celtic Christians. That thanks to our patron, Saint Patrick and his missionaries. Who, according to the historical records, evangelized the whole of Ireland in one single generation, a miracle of great magnitude. For the Kells, or Celts if you prefer, the Christian life was one which embodied the totality of all creation: the mountains, the valleys, trees and forests, grasslands, oceans and lakes, stars and moon, even to the point of building the fire in the hearth each morning, plowing a field, sowing the field, and reaping the harvest from the field. Rising from sleep each morning and laying down to sleep in the evening were as much a part of their worship as Sunday Mass. Every step of the day, every breath they took was a part of their worship of the infinite God, who was, and is today, beyond human understanding. Christianity for the Kells was, as it was for the first Christians, a mystical experience. Today, much of the more cosmopolitan folks of the United Kingdom consider Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the outlying islands to be 'backwater country' inhabited by a simple people. At the fall of the Roman Empire, those so-called simple folks were the Einstein's of their day as the majority of Britain had been invaded by pagans who brought their barbarism along with them. Were it not for the Christians of those 'backwater' lands, Christianity would not have gained the stronghold it enjoyed during the Dark Ages. Indeed, the Kells and their faith were the one shining light for the whole of Europe during those 'dark' centuries. We would do well, to follow their example. In the end, during those dark times when the world was falling apart, whole villages sprang up around the monastic communities and the habitants of these villages became as much of an integral part of the monastic local society as the monks, nuns, priests and hermits. The villagers and religious of the community were not separate, they were 'one with God.' THAT is, not should be, the example we are to follow as it is the exact same example of life the first 200-300 years of the Church before it became an institution rather than a way of life.

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