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what did the monasteries ever do for us?

May 24, 2013

The abbey at Melrose was founded from visiting monks on “missionary” journeys from the monastery at Lindesfarne, Holy Island. In fact so too were the abbeys all along the Tweed. The monks must have spent more time out and about than they did in the abbey praying.

Cuthbert was no exception, he spent time reaching outwards from Melrose in his early days and was successful in reaching many people with the message. In later life he was put in charge of the abbey at Lindesfarne, but still he showed no sign of attending to keeping order at home. In fact he travelled widely, much of the time trudging on foot much as we did last week with the gospel of Christianity. He is known to have visited Berwick and Galloway as well as St Andrews.

In today’s terms we would think of Cuthbert more as a missionary, an evangelist or an apostle. For someone from Newfrontiers I am most comfortable with the term Apostle. Cuthbert did much of what we see apostles doing today, church planting, establishing church plants, preaching, teaching and exercising a ministry of healing. I don’t know what you as a reader think about the accounts of miracles in Cuthberts story – but I do know, because I have seen for myself that God answers prayers often in gentle ways but sometimes with amazing miracles, so I am prepared to accept the miracle stories at face value!

So I am beginning to discover Cuthbert more along the lines of a modern day apostle and church planter than the picture of a scholarly and reclusive monk hiding away in his abbey

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