Robert K. Atkin is a speculative fiction author. Passionate about theology, science fiction and fantasy, his stories will transport you to another time and place.
Monasticism in Western Europe reached its zenith during the High Middle Ages of the late eleventh century and early twelfth century. Coming out of the ascetic tradition of the Desert Fathers at the end of the third century, monasticism grew to become a highly influential movement with centres of worship and learning throughout medieval Europe. In this paper I will describe the development of medieval monasticism and consider the spiritual benefits that it offered to men and women both inside and outside monastic communities. I will not provide a comprehensive analysis of the benefits. Instead I will look at examples from the spiritual disciplines of prayer, study and manual work. I will conclude with a reflection on what spiritual benefit monasticism might offer the life of the church today.
In this pericope from John’s Gospel Jesus meets a Samaritan woman, the traditional enemy of the Jews and a social outcast, at the OT setting for a matrimonial encounter. This dialogue reveals the truth of Jesus’ identity as Messiah and leads to the Samaritans’ confession that Jesus is the Saviour of the world. After discussing the historical, canonical and theological background I will present an exegesis of the story, describing Jesus’ actions and finish by providing some of the ways John intended the passage to be used and how it may be applied by the reader today.
Robert Atkin is a writer, website designer, theology student, father and husband. At present he runs a website design business and is researching for a couple of books. This website is a collection of essays and other writing projects. Read More…