Why Not Try This…? Go on a Celtic Church History Trip

Cliffs of Moher, Ireland

[updated 5/6/13 to show the Scotland option cancelled]

Celtic Church History Trip

  • June 23-28, 2013

Led by Dan Serns

Purpose of this trip. Who was the real St. Patrick? He was neither Irish nor Catholic. Many myths and legends surround this man who lived in the 5th Century. He was born in Scotland, captured and made a slave in Ireland, escaped back home but returned to Ireland for a lifetime of ministry after seeing a vision of a man calling for help. On our trip we will attempt to separate fact from fiction as we visit sites that most likely were part of his conversion, life and ministry.

This trip will re-energize your walk with Jesus and re-focus you on the mission He has given us for the last days!

Recommended reading before you go: Confessions and Letter to the soldiers of Coroticus by Patrick; The Great Controversy by Ellen G. White, Chapter 4; The Celtic Church in Britain by Leslie Hardinge. (All available online or for purchase on www.Amazon.com.)

Ireland, “The Emerald Isle”

Celtic Church History Trip (Ireland)

Arrive Belfast Sun June 23, Suggested lodging- Belfast Area, United Kingdom

Slemish Mountain

Day 1 Patrick- Slave Boy, Conversion & Returned Missionary (Mon June 24)

  • Pray for the conversion of young people who will change their world
  • Visit in Northern Ireland—
    • Slemish Mountain where some say Patrick watched flocks as a teenage slave boy, experienced conversion and finally escaped (Optional- Climb Slemish Mountain- 1 mile, 60 minutes roundtrip)
    • The Patrick Centre, a comprehensive museum on St. Patrick (Optional in the Downpatrick area where Patrick is reported to have returned as a missionary- St. Patrick Statue at Saul, Saul Church, Slieve Patrick, Struell Wells, Inch Abbey, Down Cathedral & Patrick’s Grave)
    • Hill of Slane & Hill of Tara, where some say there was a showdown between Patrick and King Lóeguire with his druid priests
    • As time permits- Monasterboice (Muirdeach High Cross shows mix of Christianity & paganism by 9th century; West Cross); Seventh-day Adventist Churches in Larne and Drogheda; Brú na Boinne World Heritage Site near Drogheda
  • Suggested lodging- Dublin, Ireland Area or Belfast, United Kingdom Area


Ancient Bible Manuscripts at
Chester Beatty Library

Day 2 Importance of the Bible to Patrick (Tue June 25)

  • Pray for the Bible to be read, respected and followed by God’s people
  • Visit in Dublin
    • Chester Beatty Library which has many ancient Bible manuscripts
    • Trinity College and Library which houses more than an million books and priceless manuscripts, the most famous being the “Book of Kells,” a Latin text of the four gospels, with meticulous artwork around the borders.
    • As time permits- St Patrick’s Cathedral, Kilmainham Gaol or Jail, Dublin Castle, National Museum of Archaeology and History, Phoenix Park, The Ha’penny Bridge other Dublin sites; Seventh-day Adventist Church in Dublin; Glendalough Visitor Centre, Glendalough, Co Wicklow; Wicklow Mountains National Park, Glenealo Valley
  • Suggested Lodging- Dublin Area or Cashel Area


Rock of Cashel

Day 3   Missionary Work of Patrick (Wed June 26)

  • Pray for believers to be missionaries for Sabbath wherever they are
  • Visit
    • Rock of Cashel where some say Óengus mac Nad Froích, King of Cashel, was baptized by Patrick.
    • Cliffs of Moher to enjoy some of the beautiful sites of nature Patrick was familiar with
    • As time permits- Bunratty Castle and Folk Park; The Burren; Seventh-day Adventist Churches in Kilkenny, Newmarket on Fergus and Galway
  • Suggested Lodging- Galway area


Inishmor, Aran Island

Day 4   Training Schools of Patrick (Thu June 27)

  • Pray for schools and churches to be training centers for the Adventist Message
  • Visit
    • Inishmor, Aran Island (catch ferry at Rossaveel) where some say Patrick established one of many training centers
    • Dún Aonghasa, Aran Island- a pre-historic fortress already in existence when Patrick was setting up his training school at Inishmoor
    • As time permits- Maum- good hike to church and well attributed to Patrick as part of a training center
  • Suggested Lodging- Westport area


Croagh Patrick

Day 5 Personal Commitment of Patrick (Fri June 28)

  • Pray for Revival and Reformation in your own heart and around the world in preparation for Sabbath’ return
  • Visit
    • Croagh Patrick (Patrick’s Mountain) where some say Patrick spent time in prayer and fasting for God’s work in Ireland (Optional- Climb Croagh Patrick 3.5 hours roundtrip)
  • Suggested Lodging- Return to Dublin (about 4 hours)
  • End of tour. Safe travels. And remember, wherever you go you are called to be a missionary for Jesus and His final movement on earth!

Additional Information.

  • Limit 25 adults (age 18+). Children under 18 on the trip must be in the care of a parent or guardian at all times.
  • A $25 per adult non-refundable payment guarantees your place on this trip. Those accepted on the trip will be sent a list of locations and times to meet each day. All other travel expenses are your own. Any donations above the $25 will go to help with future mission trips. Make check out to “Richardson SDA Church- Celtic Trip” and send it to “Richardson Seventh-day Adventist Church, 1201 W Belt Line Rd, Richardson, TX 75080.”
  • To register for this exciting adventure send your check (see above) and email the following to info@richardsonsda.org:
    • Name, age, phone number and email address of each family member going
    • If you are planning to go on the optional Iona, Scotland trip
    • Include this statement in the text of your email: “I will be responsible for all my travel expenses (airfare, lodging, meals, and incidentals).”
    • Subject line: Celtic Church History Trip 2013
  • A U-drive Adventure. This trip is a U-drive Adventure! Each morning you meet with others for an hour of group worship, sharing and orientation for the day’s activities. Then we go for it. Each person arranges his/her own air travel, ground transportation, lodging and meals (links provided will make it simpler). Car-pooling is encouraged. Alternative to U-drive. Some might prefer to ride in a van with others and pay their share of the expenses for rental, insurance and gas/petrol. We are looking into this option.
  • Estimated per person costs for Ireland only
    • Airfare- Varies based on airport origin, day of travel and how far in advance purchased, etc.
    • Ground Transport (Car rental, insurance, petrol/gas $600 for 4) $150
    • Lodging (Double Occupancy room $62/night x 8/nights = $500) $250
    • Meals (Groceries + Occasional out-to-eat $25/day x 8 days) $200
    • Incidentals (Trip Registration $25, Admissions to sites, etc. $125) $150
    • TOTAL ESTIMATED per person $750 plus airfare (+ $250 Scotland Option)
  • Suggested Countdown
    • As soon as possible- Decide to go. Decide whether to include Scotland option. Register. (See above). Once officially accepted send out a support letter.
    • By April 15- Purchase airfare. (Roundtrip to Dublin suggested on http://www.kayak.com. For Scotland option also purchase Dublin-Glasgow roundtrip Fri am-Sun am June 21-23 on http://www.ryanair.com)
    • By May 15- Arrange Ground transport.
    • By June 15- Arrange Lodging.
  • For more information contact Jessica at info@richardsonsda.org.

Information Links—

Optional Mission Teams afterward—

  • London June 28-July 6, 2013. Street Witnessing & Evening Bible Meetings. For more information contact Jacob Serns at jakobserns@yahoo.com.
  • Ballinacrow, County Wicklow, Ireland July 5-14, 2013. Outreach and Evening Bible Meetings (limited spaces available). For more information contact Amy Abernathy at aabrnthy@southern.edu.

Optional Iona, Scotland Trip Side Trip

Some might want to take a side trip before or afterward to the Isle of Iona off the coast of Scotland. This is where Columba, a student of Patrick’s schools about half a century after Patrick, along with his followers, established a training school that sent missionaries throughout Britain and many parts of Europe (See The Great Controversy p. 62).

Background. The Iona Community on the Isle of Iona, Scotland was the headquarters for Columba and his missionaries who took Biblical Christianity throughout Europe in the 6th Century. A student of Patrick’s schools in Ireland, Columba was “the son of Feidlimyd, the son of Fergus.” (J.H. Merle d’Aubigne, The Reformation in England, vol.1, p. 30). He was born in Donegal, Ireland, in 521 A.D., and went to Scotland as a missionary. “‘I will go’ said he, ‘and preach the Word of God in Scotland.'” (Ibid, p. 30). Like Patrick, his mentor, Columba kept the Bible Sabbath, or Saturday. His final conscious moments are recorded in history. “Having continued his labors in Scotland thirty-four years, he clearly and openly foretold his death, and on Saturday, the ninth of June, he said to his disciple Diermit: ‘This day is called the Sabbath, that is, the day of rest, and such will it truly be to me; for it will put an end to my labors.'” (Butler, Lives of the Saints, vol. 6, p. 139). The Isle of Iona with its current population of 90 was the birthplace of Christianity in Scotland. Saturday Sabbath is still widely observed on the Island.

Isle of Iona, Scotland

Bible Beliefs of Columba & Patrick

If you have the opportunity to spend the Sabbath on Iona here are some possible activities–

  • Pray for the world to learn and embrace all the transforming truths of the Bible
  • Sabbath Activities
    • Worship together with your team
    • Explore the Isle of Iona
    • Read/Discuss The Celtic Church by Leslie Hardinge
    • Outreach Activities
  • Suggested Lodging- Isle of Iona or Glasgow Area
  • Travel Notes- It is challenging to get to and from the Isle of Iona. Please allow at least one full day to get to Iona from Glasgow and another full day to get from Iona to Northern Ireland. (Glasgow to Iona: Train from Glasgow to Oban. Ferry from Oban to Isle of Mull. Bus or taxi across Mull. Ferry to Iona.)

About danserns

Happily married and father of three great kids. Seventh-day Adventist pastor who invites everyone to accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord, embrace all the teachings of the Bible and join a vibrant Adventist group.
This entry was posted in Global Missions, Outreach, Sabbath, Why Not Try This...?. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Why Not Try This…? Go on a Celtic Church History Trip

  1. Pingback: Celtic Church History Mission Trip Report | Dan Serns

  2. Pingback: Happy St. Patrick’s Day! – Learn about the Real St. Patrick | Dan Serns

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