The Celtic Way of Evangelism: How Christianity Can Reach the West . . . Again

The Celtic Way of Evangelism: How Christianity Can Reach the West . . . Again

by George G. Hunter III

Celtic Christianity--the form of Christian faith that flourished among the people of Ireland during the Middle Ages--has gained a great deal of attention lately.

Hunter III points out that, while the attention paid to the Celtic Christians is well deserved, much of it fails to recognize the true genius of this ancient form of Christianity.

What many contemporary Christians do not realize is that Celtic Christianity was one of the most successfully evangelistic branches of the church in history.

again," then we must begin by learning from these powerful witnesses to the saving love of Jesus Christ.

  • Language: English
  • Category: Christianity
  • Rating: 4.06
  • Pages: 144
  • Publish Date: February 1st 2000 by Abingdon Press
  • Isbn10: 0687085853
  • Isbn13: 9780687085859

What People Think about "The Celtic Way of Evangelism: How Christianity Can Reach the West . . . Again"

In The Celtic Way of Evangelism, Hunter discusses two primary topics: How St. Patrick (and those who joined him) evangelized the "barbarian" people of Ireland in the 400s C.E., "saving Christianity in the West," and how their methods and mindset are applicable to our post-Christian culture today. Several key insights I pulled from the book were: 1) Instead of following the Roman model of evangelization, which necessitated "civilizing" first and then adoption of Roman Christian customs second, the Celtic Christian movement took the time to understand and befriend the people before sharing their message (5). This ancient Chinese poem sums up the Celtic method well: Go to the people / Live among them / Learn from them / Love them / Start with what they know / Build on what they have (129). 6) In contrast to the Roman church which, at the time, largely emphasized the transcendence of God, Celtic Christianity emphasized the immanence of the triune God as our "Companion in this life and the next" (77). 8) Celtic Christianity held an optimism towards human nature. 10) Hunter makes this point (maybe one of the most profound and profoundly stated in the book): "The faith that is in many church attendees is as much American folk religion as Christianity. As I overhear God's people talk, Christianity is almost reduced to accepting Christ as your Savior so you can go to heaven when you die, and between now and then you attend church, have a daily devotional, live a clean life, and 'let' God meet your needs and attain your goals. Such faith lacks deep roots that weather storms, that produce reproductive Christians who live in faith, hope, and love, who become saints engaging in ministry, working for peace and justice, and reaching lost people" (94). - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - These are powerful observations which will continue to mold my understanding of what it means to be a Christian in the context of our world today!

This book is great in explaining a lot of the thought about the goals of Highland's Christian community and how we desire it to be in engaging our culture and not hiding from it. This book helped me realize I wasn't crazy, and that even though I'm Protestant, that my struggles in more establish churches was an older struggle (roman model vs.

The Celtic Way of Evangelism Christianity is almost reduced to accepting Christ as your Savior so you can go to heaven when you die, and between now and then you attend church, have a daily devotional, live a clean life, and let God meet your needs and attain your goals. The Roman version builds a church for people to come into belief before they can belong, where as the Celtic way meet people in their culture with hope of one belonging to invite into belief.

For example, Celtic Christians evangelized as a team prepared by a fivefold structure of experience (p48) meant to: root your consciousness in the gospel and Scriptures, to help you experience the presence of the Triune God and an empowered life, help you discover and fulfill your vocation, and give you evangelistic opportunities.

Two glaring issues seem to come from Hunters personal quirks.