February Lecture, 13-Feb-2017

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Monastic Ireland – A gift of the Nile?

Christ and saint Mena Deseert fatherAlf Monaghan’s illustrated talk looked at the history of early Irish Christianity from a different perspective – a Mediterranean perspective. It provided a tantalizing glimpse under the veil of history. It asked many questions and confounds some of the accepted theories about the history of early Christianity in Ireland. The talk looked at the links with ancient Egypt, connected Irish monasticism with the Desert Fathers and the early Irish Church with the Egyptian Coptic Church. Recent Irish discoveries such as the Fadden More Psalter – Egyptian papyrus found in an ancient book of psalms from a Tipperary bog – are clues pointing to a more substantial Eastern Mediterranean influence in early Irish Christianity, than has been acknowledged to date.

ALF MONAGHAN is from Carrick-on-Shannon has spent most of his life working abroad.

For 20 years he has worked with the world’s leading consultancy firms, as an advisor to governments and development agencies in; Central America, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, South & West Africa. Recently based in the Middle East he has spent more than 10 years living and working between Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan & Egypt. Always interested in history, his time in Syria and Egypt in particular, sparked off a deeper interest in early Christianity and the influence of the Eastern Mediterranean and North Africa, on Irish Christianity – much of which is now ‘lost’ or ‘forgotten’.

Harbour Hotel, Galway on Monday, February 13th, at 8.00pm

Lectures are normally held on the second Monday of the month during the season (Sept-Apr)