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Listening for the Heartbeat of God - A Celtic Spirituality
by J. Philip Newell

"God's gift of grace is regarded not as planting something totally new in bad soil, but as releasing or bring out the goodness which is present in the soil of human life but obstructed by evil. Grace is seen as enabling our nature to flourish, as cooperating with the light that is within every person." p 50
The highly regarded The Celtic Way by Ian Bradley is out of print and is used here as complementary, supplemental material.

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Session   Course Outline and Links to the 10 Session Pages 
Blue links below indicate Session Pages are posted. Material and notes are added steadily through the course.
Sep 20
Introduction Evening.
Video Selections - Introducing Celtic Christianity
Sep 27
Pagan to Christian - A Focus on Goodness     Presenter: Jock
Reading: Ch 1. Listening for the Goodness - Pelagius
Supplement: The Goodness of Nature - The Celtic Way
Oct 4
Gentle Missionaries      Presenter: Wayne
Reading: Ch 2. Listening within Creation - Eriugena
Supplement: A Progression of Saints - The Celtic Way
Oct 11 Thanksgiving - No session
Oct 18
The Celtic Legacy      Presenter: Jock
Reading: Ch 3. Listening for God in All Things - Carmina Gadelica
Supplement: Presence and Protection - The Celtic Way
Oct 25
An Evening of Reading and Sharing - Favourite Celtic Prayers, Poems, Hymns, Art, Music
Nov 1
Models of Change      Presenter: Wayne
Patrick, Colombo and David
Supplement: Monks and Pilgrims - The Celtic Way
Nov 8
Celtic Awakenings      Presenter: Jock
Reading: Ch 4. Listening with the Imagination - George MacDonald
                  Ch 5. Listening and Acting - George McLeod
Supplement: The Way Goes On - The Celtic Way
Nov 15
Balance in All Things    Presenter: Wayne
Reading: Ch 6. Two Ways of Listening - John and Peter
Supplement: The Power of Imagination - The Celtic Way
Nov 22
Group Discussion - How can we action the ideas and practices of Celtic Christianity at St. Davids?
Needed spiritual values as urban secularity becomes global village.
Nov 29
Guest Speaker - Dr. Wayne Davies, Department of Geography, University of Calgary, who is a native of Wales. He will speak with us introducing us to his homeland and talk about some of its special places.

Links to purchase this book:,, or
Holy Manners The background on the phrase and why we have adopted it. The guidelines for our studies.
Click to visit the St. David's Adult Ed Forum  Internet Discussion Group at Yahoo - the St. David's Forum. The archive is public and readable. Participation is by invitation. Click HERE if you would like to join. You will then be able to post your own responses to the list and will be emailed the notices and contributions of the others. Click left to visit the archives of the site (read only). There are presently 88 persons.
Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge. ... Proverbs 23:12 (NIV)
Group Facilitator. Wayne Holst              EMAIL WAYNE

I spent most of my life thinking like a church professional, rather than as a regular congregational member. My training as a pastor always had me asking myself 'how can I apply this discovery, insight, new information to a regular church setting?'

Often, clergy have been hesitant to share the discoveries they have made through a 'critical' approach to the Bible with their parishoners because they wonder how laypeople might accept it. I have found that many thinking laity are professionals in their own fields of endeavour and understand a critical approach very readily. What they seek are ways of relating faith to daily living.

I am grateful for the journey I have been taking through ordained ministry to teaching at the university and serving as a fellow layperson at St.David's United Church. Here we find that questioning and honest expression of our faith and doubt is readily accepted and supported.
Group Facilitator. Jock McTavish           EMAIL JOCK

I am a student and a poet, a democrat and a techocrat, an eclectic eccentric. I grew up in a loving Baptist community, so in my heart I'm still a Bible loving evangelical. As I grew in learning I found a new home in the United Church whose tolerance embraces the broadest range of Christian understanding. I most enjoy the illumination of our ancient traditions by modern scholarship. For they show in clear novel ways that the perspectives of the Special Ones were seldom the understandings of those that followed. They show all knowledge to be in relationship .

There seems a lack of understanding in our secular world for religious practices. The reasons why I still gladly - even necessarily - attend church are difficult to voice to those unfamiliar with church, or those injured by church. Elliott got it right. We find our way back to the place we started from. But with new understanding.