Celtic christianity

The term `Celtic Church’ is used to describe the earliest native form of Christianity in the islands of Britain and Ireland, it dates from around 400. The Celtic Church established itself as the most successful evangelistic movement Britain has ever seen with people like Ninian, the first known evangelist in Scotland, David, who had such an influence on Wales, Patrick, a Scot who spread Christianity to Ireland, and Columba, an Irishman who led many in Scotland to Christ.

Early Christianity in Celtic lands had a more natural, less imperial feel than it did elsewhere and it’s spirituality is reviving today. This has a strong sense of God’s presence in creation and in everyday life, celebrates God through all the senses, releases creativity, respects both women’s and men’s gifts and values contemplation.

Celtic Christians see life as a pilgrimage, uses earthy yet poetic prayers, and have a vivid sense of saints, angels and the unseen world. 
Many people today see Celtic spirituality as a way to weave together again the separated strands of Christianity, and to heal a fragmented world. Because the Celtic Church had not been infected with a dualistic outlook on creation, they did not see matter as evil, nor the spiritual world as divorced from the material. Thus, they looked on Creation around them as one great hymn of praise to its Creator, reflecting His nature and character.

Celtic Spirituality  can be thought of as an understanding of the interconnection of the Divine, humankind and all of creation. It celebrates the sacredness of ordinary life through ritual, symbol, prayers, poetry, and song. Christian Celtic Spirituality invites a willingness to journey within and without time, and outside the structures of dogma, to find a deeper truth and connection to God. Christian Celtic Spirituality can offer a spiritual guidance and a depth of meaning to many who are seeking to integrate their religious and spiritual beliefs with their experiences of the seasons of nature and the cycles of life. 

Celtic Christian Distinctive Features   

  1). Hope - Looks first for the good rather than the evil in all things. Celebratory with Love and respect for art and poetry, the great stories and higher learning.

  2). Equality - Of men and women, clergy and laity. Women had more equal footing in ancient Irish law, thus had more equal say in church governance.

  3). Mysticism - The Infinite God cannot be fully comprehended or explained by finite man. Use of ceremony, symbolism, a sense of closeness and immanence between the natural and supernatural. Prayers for Protection and awareness of spirits, angels, nature spirits, and light and dark forces. 

  4). Environment & Nature - Stewardship of God's Creation. Love of nature and a passion for the wild and elemental. Celebrating the Seasons. 

  5). Holistic - Awareness of the sacred in all times and places and refusal to compartmentalize life. Thin boundaries between the sacred and the secular.

  6). Immanence - God is present within Creation. Sense of God and the saints as a continuing, personal, helpful presence. Personal relationship with Christ.

  7). Simplicity - Emphasis on the "main and plain" basic essential doctrinesTheologically orthodox, yet with heavy emphasis on the Trinity, and a love and respect for Mary, Jesus the Christ, and liturgy.

  8). Hospitality & Community - The importance of kinship and community as well as a mandate for hospitality. Emphasis on family and kinship ties.


  • The Celtic Way                                                                                                                Ian Bradley
  • Restoring the Woven Cord: Strands of Celtic Spirituality for Today                 Michael Mitton
  • Listening to the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality                                        J. Phillip Newell
  • Christ of the Celts                                                                                                          J. Phillip Newell
  • A New Harmony: The Spirit, The Earth & The Human Soul                                J. Phillip Newell
  • Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom                                                                      John O'Donohue
  • To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings                                          John O'Donohue
  • Elements of Celtic Christianity                                                                                   Anthony Duncan
  • Celtic Christian Spirituality                                                                                          Mary C. Earle
  • The Celtic Book of Seasonal Meditations                                                                 Claire Hamilton
  • Celtic Devotional: Daily Prayers & Blessings                                                            Caitlin Matthews
  • The Celtic Wheel of the Year: Celtic & Christian Seasonal Prayers                    Tess Ward                                                                               
  • A Celtic Liturgy                                                                                                                 Pat Robson
  • Celtic Daily Prayer (Book 1)                                                                                           The Northumbria Community
  • Iona Abbey Worship Book                                                                                             The Iona Community
  • Seeking God: The Way of St Benedict                                                                        Esther de Waal
  • The Celtic Way of Prayer & Every Earthly Blessings                                               Esther de Waal
  • The Celtic Reader & A Glastonbury Reader                                                              John Matthews
  • Celtic Threads: Exploring the Wisdom of Our Heritage                                          Edited by Padraigin Clancy
  • Water, Wind, Earth & Fire: Celtic Practice Praying with Elements                       Christine Valters Paintner
  • Adamnon of Iona: The Life of Columba                                                                      Richard Sharp (Translated by)
  • The Cry of the Deer: Meditations on Hymn of St Patrick                                        David Adam
  • Tides & Seasons: Modern Prayers in the Celtic Tradition                                        David Adam
  • Wisdom of the Celtic Saints                                                                                           Edward Sellner
  • Celtic Vision: Prayers, Blessings, Songs, Invocations (Carmina Gaedelica)        Esther de Waal (Ed)
  • Threshold of Light: Daily Readings from the Celtic Tradition                                Compiled by A. M. Allchin & Esther De Waal
  • Water from an Ancient Well: Celtic Spirituality for Modern Life                           Kenneth McIntosh
  • Original Blessing (Creation Spirituality)                                                                       Matthew Fox