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Not just for the self

What an intriguing article by Kenneth Steven in August’s Life and Work about the retreats he leads to Iona and particularly the spiritual understanding he has gained from the Hermit’s Cell! But I wonder if in his research into Celtic History Kenneth has been able to authenticate the purpose for which the Hermit’s Cell was originally built.

My own first moving experience of the Hermit’s Cell was as a teenager in 1946 when George MacLeod led the Canongate Christian Workers League to the site so that he could urge on us his passion for a discipline of private prayer if we were to keep fighting the good fight. And I remember that an older couple who had attached themselves to our group broke away, saying that it never was a Hermit’s Cell, just a sheep-fank.

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