Hartford Seminary Partners with John Philip Newell’s School of Celtic Consciousness

John Philip Newell

Hartford Seminary is thrilled to announce a partnership with internationally known teacher of Celtic spirituality John Philip Newell and his School of Celtic Consciousness.

From July 17-19, 2020, Hartford Seminary will host Year 1 of the the School of Celtic Consciousness (SCC), the first in a three-year program.

In addition, in August 2021, Hartford Seminary President Joel N. Lohr and Professor Miriam Therese Winter will lead a pilgrimage to Iona Abbley in Scotland for a weeklong School of Celtic Consciousness program.

SCC was founded in 2016 in the belief that Celtic wisdom is needed at this moment in time, urgently. It is a spiritual tradition in the Christian household that can nurture vision of mind, strength of soul, and compassion of action.

SCC has a three-fold purpose:

1. To consciously access the wisdom of our Celtic Christian inheritance.
2. To deepen spiritual practice in relationship to this wisdom.
3. To translate this study and practice into compassionate action.

School of Celtic Consciousness – Year 1

The School of Celtic Consciousness follows a three-year curriculum. In other words, the themes of Year 1 will not appear again until the fourth year. The curriculum years do not need to be taken in any particular order; participants may join at any stage and over a three-year period receive the full curriculum of teachings. Participants are also welcome to interchange locations. For a full listing of options, please visit the School of Celtic Consciousness website found here.

The daily schedule will consist of prayer at the beginning and ending of each day, presentations by John Philip Newell, meditative and spiritual practice, silence, and sharing. Meals will be shared in common and there will be free time to explore Hartford and rest as well as a reception on the second evening to celebrate our time together.

Registration, capped at 100, will be available soon for the July 17-19 weekend.

Pilgrimage to Iona Abbey in Scotland

Hartford Seminary will also organize a trip to Iona Abbey in Scotland from Aug. 21 to Aug. 28 in 2021 (please note, this is more than a year away). The weeklong pilgrimage combines all three years of the School of Celtic Consciousness program, in addition to the experience of touring Iona Abbey with John Philip Newell, who was once its warden.

Details about deposits and costs will be available in the coming months. If you would like to be on the “Interested in Iona” list, please send an email with that subject line to Susan Schoenberger, Director of Communications, at sschoenberger@hartsem.edu.

About John Philip Newell

John Philip Newell, the celebrated author of Listening for the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality, is one of the most prominent Christian teachers of spirituality in the Western world.

Formerly Warden of Iona Abbey in the Western Isles of Scotland, he now divides his time between Edinburgh, where he does most of his writing, and teaching on both sides of the Atlantic as well as leading international pilgrimage weeks on Iona. He is the co-founder of Heartbeat: A Sacred Journey Towards Earth’s Wellbeing, established to expand sacred vision, deepen spiritual practice, nurture reflective community and enable action for change.

In 2016 John Philip founded the School of Celtic Consciousness (SCC) in the belief that we need to access our Celtic Christian inheritance for this moment in time, urgently. The threefold vision of the School is to consciously access the wisdom of our Celtic Christian inheritance, to deepen spiritual practice in relationship to this wisdom, and to translate this study and practice into compassionate action.

The Rev. Dr. John Philip Newell is an ordained Church of Scotland minister with a passion for peace among the great wisdom traditions of humanity. In 2011, he received the first-ever Contemplative Voices Award from the Shalem Institute in Washington, DC in recognition of his work in spirituality and peacemaking. His PhD is from the University of Edinburgh and he has authored over 15 books, including Christ of the CeltsPraying with the EarthA New Harmony, and his most recent visionary title The Rebirthing of God: Christianity’s Struggle for New Beginnings.

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