Columba of Iona
Ireland in the sixth century AD is a land of warlords and warriors. The common people live their short lives in small ringforts, fearful of sudden violence, plague, hunger and the unseen demons sent by pagan gods.
In 521 A.D. Columba is born into the royal family of the warlike Northern Neil. There are expectations that he will be their future king. But Columba is no ordinary warlord.
As a youth he shows both fearless leadership and great compassion and chooses the Christian god as the most powerful one to follow.
Later, as a priest, Columba becomes dissatisfied when he compares his achievements to those of his friends. Proud, headstrong and ambitious, Columba acts rashly and this leads to his excommunication and personal crisis.
When he is unexpectedly given a second chance, Columba seizes it. He becomes a penitent; exiles himself from his family and country and founds a monastery on the island of Iona, west of Mull in Scottish Dalriada.
He chooses an unlikely monk to be his personal servant and constant advisor, but is he the right choice to help Columba control his warlike tendencies? How does Columba lead a way forwards out of paganism and ignorance?
Published: 11 July 2014
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