Schedule 2011-12

Word and Life --  Fall, 2011

Celtic Spirituality

using as our basic text J. Philip Newell's,

Christ of the Celts: 'The Healing of Creation'

This engaging and readable book offers a reflection on the “forgotten” Jesus, Christ of the ancient Celtic Christianity tradition. The author draws upon the gospels of Thomas, the Acts of John, writings of Ireneaeus , Eriugena and Teilhard de Chardin. He ignites us with the possibilities of transformation that can come from understanding this ancient spiritual tradition. He asks us to remember the goodness within each of us, our community and our Earth. Christ of the Celts shows us a new picture of who Christ is today combined with the ancient reverence for harmony with God and nature.

“This graceful, wise and important book is a superb introduction to the treasures of Celtic Christianity for our time.” - MARCUS BORG

All sessions will be on Thursdays from 10 AM to 12 noon at the Holy Cross Church Parish Hall, 1740 Cliff Drive, Santa Barbara, CA. The series fee, $50, includes all handouts and study material. Save $5 and pre-register by contacting BobDoering@wordandlife.us before the first meeting. Financial aid is available to encourage those on restricted budgets to attend; contact a member of the Steering Committee,



Sep. 8, prelude

An overview of Celtic spirituality
Series intro by Bob Doering
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Ann Jaqua's remarks
Further remarks and discussion
Rev. Ann Jaqua, retreat leader and spiritual director
Sep. 15, Chap. 1 Discussion of important theological concepts presented in the Newell book
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Ann Howard's remarks
Group discussion with Ann Howard
Rev. Ann Howard, the Beatitudes Society
Sep. 22, Chap. 2 “Music and Celtic Spirituality: The Harp as a Link to the Celtic otherworld”
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Jeanne Martin's remarks
Music, and discussion with Jeanne Martin
Dr. Jeanne Martin, professional harpist and mythologist
Sept 29, Chap. 3 Personal reflections on Celtic spirituality
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Juliet Twomey's remarks
Group discussion with Juliet Twomey
Juliet Spohn Twomey, IHM, la Casa de Maria retreat center staff
Oct. 6, Chap. 4 The Celts and their reverence for the earth
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Katherine Collis's remarks
Further reflections by Ms. Collis
Katherine Collis, retreat leader in the US and in Iona, UK
Oct. 13, Chap. 5 "Eden, the One, and ... Living in Harmony With the Earth"
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Anne Hillman's remarks
Discussion with Ms. Hillman
Anne Hillman, author & retreat leader
Oct. 20, Chap. 6 Reflections from an associate member of the Iona community
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Susan Copeland's remarks
Conclusion + Iona recalled by Judith McDermott
Rev. Susan Copeland, United Church of Christ
Oct. 27, Chap 7 Selected views and video clips of Ireland's "thin places" and sacred spaces
Introduction of speaker
Listen to Martha Siegel's remarks
Collective sharing of "pilgrimages"
Rev. Martha Siegel*, Trinity Episcopal Church, moderator
Nov. 3, Chap. 8 Thoughts on Celtic Ireland and Teilhard de Chardin Introduction of speaker
Listen to Enda Duffy's remarks
Discussion with Prof. Duffy
Prof. Enda Duffy, English Dept., UCSB
Nov. 10, postlude

Concluding thoughts on Celtic spirituality by one who was mentored by the great Thomas Merton
Introduction of speaker
Listen to James Finley's remarks
Further reflections and discussion

James Finley, former Trappist monk

*Member, Word and Life Steering Committee.


When arrangements can be made, we provide digital audio recordings of these presentations for the convenience of those who missed them. Click the blue links above as they become available, to review the presentations. Be patient while the MP3 files download, as they can be large (5 to 10 MB each in size). You may listen through your computer using headphones or speakers, or download the files for later listening on a device like an iPod.


Previous calendars and presenters
with numerous free, insightful MP3 audio recordings.
Please click the desired link.
Winter-Spring 2006 Fall 2006
Winter-Spring 2007 Fall 2007
Winter-Spring 2008 Fall 2008
Winter-Spring 2009 Fall 2009
Winter-Spring 2010 Fall 2010
Winter-Spring 2011