Celtic Reflections From Estes: Anam Cara

One of my closest friends recently expressed to me that he could not understand the shifts that have occurred in my life over the last several years. It is a complicated matter, really. It’s a long and involved conversation because he and I have been friends for over thirty years. We have rarely lived in the same city and for most of the time, not even the same state. Yet every week, and I mean every single week, we will talk on the phone at least twice if not more. I am grateful for his unwavering presence in my life for such a long time. He has defined friendship for me within all that life has had to offer thus far. So it is important to have the conversation. It is life-giving to listen

Celtic Reflections From Estes: Prophets and More Profits

Today the mountains are partially covered with low lying clouds. They are both hiding and revealing something. There is a telling of mystery which is so inviting. Yet there is a fire in the hearth, a warm cup of coffee and the desire to release which was sadly presented to me this morning. I am staying indoors until this is finished. “NASA announced some grim climate news over the weekend. Last month was the warmest April ever recorded, with soaring temperatures that smashed the previous monthly record by the largest margin in known history. Sound like something you’ve heard before? It’s probably because you have. Based on NASA data, April was the seventh month in a row that global temper

Celtic Reflections From Estes: Do This In Memory of Me

I understand that there is “in memory of…” that will remind me of say, my grandmother, or my first big hit in a serious baseball game, maybe even that first kiss. It takes me back and those memories can even give me that special tingly feeling all over again. When Jesus spoke these words, “Do this in memory of me,” he was speaking, ritualizing, and living out of the essence of being Jewish. To remember in this way is to be taken back to THE original event as if we are re-enacting it all over again. I guess that is what we mean by real presence; that is the mystical way we--our entire selves--are bound up in that last supper through him, with him, and in him. The divisions of past, present,

My Roots In Celtic Christianity

Celtic Christianity calls me back to my earliest memories of wholeness. My roots are in my family, of course, and they were Jesus people, all about good behavior. If you can’t be perfect fake it. (Do your best. Be the best. Never lie. Get good grades. Be nice to your sister. Eat your vegetables. Wear a coat. Wear clean underwear, sensible shoes, and a smile.) Those teachings were all well and good but of limited use in the face of growing up. I felt misunderstood, picked, on, worried, and never good enough. But other roots went deeper than the ideals taught in words. We had a half-acre garden where I learned to plant and weed and pick in morning’s stillness, dew heavy on the lea

How Celtic Christianity Salvaged My Crumbling Christian Faith

My "becoming a Christian" story is not unusual in Evangelical circles. I was 16 years old when my youth group took a trip to Denver--the big city closest to my small Nebraska town. We were there to attend a popular Evangelical youth conference complete with bands, speakers, and lots of corny Christian themed T-shirts. A vibrant and compelling speaker ended his speech with an "Alter Call"--an invitation to 'accept Jesus into your heart'. I responded to this one similarly to how I had responded to the few prior ones I had experienced at Christian punk rock shows. Yup, that was a thing. The big difference this time was that I was immediately surrounded by a few of my friends and mentors who con

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