On frymðe wæs Word

This is primarily to be a space to work out theological and Biblical matters.  I have an internet journal for regular life stuff already so this is particularly for the matters of Christian faith and religion.

This could just as easily be done privately in a handwritten journal, and much of what goes on here probably will have been handwritten first and copied here later.  But as shall become evident in the next posting, I firmly believe in communal theology.  The study of the Bible and the development of Christian doctrines is never to be done alone.  Christ promised the Holy Spirit not simply to the individual disciples, but to all of them together.  Thus, all have a role in the development of sound teaching and the building up of the Church.  Some people will have more academic contributions than others, of course, but oftentimes there is need for distinctly nonacademic, or earthy, approaches to keep theology from turning into an activity for the intellectual elite only.  Medieval scholasticism is quite guilty of that, as is much Reformed theology in Protestant circles.    And Christianity should never be academic nor anti-intellectual.  I cannot deny being an academic myself, but I have come to terms with the realization lately that I am not a proper scholar; I don’t have the drive to be that devoted to study; I relish the opportunity to make complicated things simple again, such that the farmer across the street could understand it.  So sometimes I’ll tend towards seminary lingo, and other times I’ll cast it aside in favor of more real-world explanations.

I do have a thing for languages, though.  I’ve studied Spanish, Latin, Greek, Ancient Hebrew, and Anglo-Saxon, and tend to use a number of these rather freely.  In previous centuries this was normal, and academics did this far more liberally and skillfully than I ever will.  I am not trying to copy the practices of a bygone age, but simply express my thoughts more precisely or whimsically.  If you catch me misusing one of these languages, feel free to rebuke me; I’m quite fallible.

The name of this blog is leorningcniht, which is the word used in the Anglo-Saxon gospels for “disciple.”  The breakdown is fairly visible: leorning-cniht, or learning-knight.  These date back probably to the 900’s AD, so this isn’t so much a knight in shining armor as in the Late Middle Ages, but rather a loyal subject who serves a nobleman as a warrior or as a lesser lord.  It adds a measure of dignity and purpose to the compound word, as leorningcild (learning-child) is a more normal word for student.  Overall, it strikes me as a much more cool and complete rendition of what a disciple of Christ is: not just students under a teacher, but a servant of a man of noble stature!

About Fr. Brench

I'm an Anglican Priest and a sci-fi geek. Therefore, I write about liturgy & spiritual formation, theology & biblical studies, and Doctor Who. But I keep those blogs separate so I don't confuse too many people!
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