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Wanderers for Christ

Wanderers for Christ


2 August 2010

St. Columban...was born on the island of Ireland...Here lives the race of the Scots, who, although they lack the laws of other nations, flourish in the doctrine of Christian strength, and exceed in faith all the neighbouring tribes.

- The Monk Jonas, Life of St. Columban (Italian, 7th century)

They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated - of whom the world was not worthy - wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

- Hebrews 11.37, 38

Irish Christians were known for peregrinatio, the practice of wandering about under the leading of the Lord, looking for people who needed the Gospel of the Lord. Columban, or, Columbanus, was only the best known of the multiplied thousands of monks and priests who left their native country to walk around Europe, bringing the Good News of Jesus, throughout the 7th century.

It would be difficult to calculate the impact for good such people made. Thomas Cahill suggests the magnitude of that impact in the title of his book about the Celtic revival, How the Irish Saved Civilization. These were not wealthy people. They were, however, men of faith, learning, and deep conviction. They had experienced the power of the Gospel at first hand, and they knew it was the great need of every human being.

These peregrini subsisted on meager food; their only possessions were the clothes on their backs and the books in their sacks. They taught, preached, counseled, and served the people they met wherever they went. They embodied the "as you are going" spirit that our Lord commands of all His followers about as well as any ever have in the history of the Christian Church (Matt. 28.18-20).

What can we learn from them? We, too, are peregrini - wanderers - in our own journey with the Lord. We are called to "flourish in the doctrine of Christian strength" and to "exceed in faith" all those around us, so that we might convince others, by our words and deeds, that Jesus has, indeed, been raised from the dead.

In your "wandering," whom do you meet? Who are the people who cross your path week-in and week-out? Do you know their names? Where they stand with the Lord? And are you prepared to begin reaching out to them with the love of Christ and the truth of the Gospel?

T. M. Moore, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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