November 23, 2003

More on the post-modern catachist

I read the following at the incredible Ecclesiax website (they're a faith community in Ottawa), and it spoke directly to the inner dialogue I've been having lately about the role of a chatechist in the emerging church:
Q: What is an Anamchara? Why is this important to Ecclesiax?

A: Anam is the Gaelic word for soul. Cara is the Gaelic word for friend. Soulfriend. In early Celtic Christian communities Anamchara (soulfriendship) was practiced so that people could aspire to a greater level of spiritual fitness. Much like going to the gym today to be physically fit. Anamchara is based on a commitment to a loving friendship where one person seeks out the compassionate advice and counsel of someone usually more mature. Soulfriendship seeks to go to the heart of what is important.

Saint Brigid of Kildare (Ireland) said: "A person without a soul friend is like a body without a head."
I wonder what this looks like in practice? I wonder if the average Christ-follower in our church could be an Anamchara...and if not, what's holding them back?


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