Iona Benedictine Abbey

 

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Iona Benedictine Abbey, Isle of Iona, Scotland  2014

This year’s Christmas cards from us was once again created by my love of Scotland.  Iona Benedictine Abbey is the cradle of Christianity into the British Isles.  My Twinnie just shared with me this article from Historic Scotland:

“On 7 December 521AD Saint Columba, founder of the monastery of Iona, was born in Donegal, Ireland. Columba was banished from Ireland in 563AD following a disagreement about the ownership of a religious manuscript, and left Ireland, landing at the Kintyre peninsula with twelve companions. He moved further north and reached the island of Iona, where he established a monastery.

According to tradition, Iona was the first place in Scotland from which Columba was unable to see his homeland, and so he choose this as the site for Iona Monastery. From here, Columba worked both as a politician and a missionary, visiting King Bridei in Inverness and writing hymns and books for the monastery.

The life of St Colomba is told by Adomnan, the ninth abbot of Iona, who wrote Vita Columbae, the main source of information for the saint’s life.”

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Benches in the Rain, Iona Benedictine Abbey, Isle of Iona, Scotland

St. Columba followed us throughout the Highlands, showing up in many references from Urquhart Castle and beyond.  The peace of this place is palpable.  People stay here for weeks upon weeks on retreats.  That’s something I’d like to do.

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It was here, above, where St. Columba prayed each evening.

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One of four major Celtic crosses at the Iona Benedictine Abbey.

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A peek inside the Abbey.  I was surprised and impressed to see bookshelves to the right upon entering that shelve Bibles in every language.  Borrow one, return it.  Iona Benedictine Abbey is inclusive and welcoming.

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A House of Prayer for all Nations.  As we approach this Christmas season my personal prayer is to be more inclusive, more welcoming and impart a kinder, gentler self out onto the world stage.  Season’s Greetings, Happy Holidays Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas, ya’ll.

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