Ecology, Education & Eucharist

16th-20th August 2010

The aim of this week is to lead participants to an understanding of the world as God’s work of art, and our role, as fellow artists, helping to bring this artwork to completion.

Ecology is understanding the world as God’s temple. The abbey gardens, and woods are used to introduce participants to the planet as a living and breathing organism, an extension of our bodily selves rather than an object for our use and exploitation.

Education is the key to exchanging our natural biological domineering way of being in the world for a more enlightened appreciation of our appropriate place on the planet. Workshops for developing such attitudes and artistry will include nature walks, approaches to the development of sacred spaces such as gardens, sanctuaries, labyrinths. The emphasis will be on imagination, imagining the world as God dreamt it might be. We ourselves are God’s work of art and education should help us to achieve the beauty which is our goal as human beings; alongside maintenance of the heritage we should be handing on to our children.

Eucharist means to give thanks – the goal of education is to teach us to give thanks for everything that exists in the universe, to change what may appear to be drudgery into gratitude; the ordinariness of our lives transformed into the marvelous, water changed into wine. Every fragment of the planet is potentially an element of the Eucharist and every day we should be celebrating a Mass of the universe.

Course Directors: Noirin Ni Riain, Mark Patrick Hederman, Gregory Collins, Simon Sleeman.

This course is part of the Certificate in Theology and Religious Studies offered by M.I.C. 6 ECTS credits are awarded for this course.


€350 for course and lunch each day.

Limited accommodation available in the monastery guesthouse (all rooms en suite).

If you wish to register for this course or get further information please email