Early Irish scoiety is famous for its contribution to religious art, and many of its saints are still renowned for their holiness. What is far less well known is how that culture expressed itself in theological reflection. This book assumes that very Christian culture gives a specific, local slant to its picture of Christianity; one which reflects its particular concerns, background and tradition of teaching. This book's aim is to draw out some features of this 'local theology' as seen in some of the most famous Celtic authors and texts of the first millenium. It examines the theological framework within which St Ptrick presented his experience and lloks at how the Celtic lands of Ireland and Wales developed a distinctive view of sin, reconciliation and Christian law which they later exported to the rest of western Christianity. It looks at writers like Adomnan of Iona and at Muirchu who reflected on the meaning of the conversion of his people two centuries later. It survery how they approach liturgy, sacred time and the Last Things. By examining well-known texts such as the Voyage of St Brendan and books such as the Stowe Missal and the Book of Armagh from the fresh standpoint of formal theology, the book brings familiar texts to lie in a new way. While aimed primarily at those intersted in Christianity in Celtic lands, Celtic Theolog also fills a long-standing gap in the history of early medieval theology int he west.
There is a traditional saying of ancient wisdom: 'A threshold is a sacred thing. In some places of the world, in some traditional cultures and in monastic life, this is still remembered. It is something, however, that we often forget today. To take time to pause at a threshold - be it a place, or a moment between one action and the next - is to show reverence for the handling of space and time, and respect for those who we meet. Pausing allows us to let go of all the demands and expectations of the previous activity, and to prepare for the encounter with another. Esther de Wall explores what this ancient wisdom has to teach us about our public lives in the world today.