The House That John Built

the house that john built

Ask for the old paths, the ancient paths, where the good way is,

and you will find rest for your souls (Jeremiah 6v16)

Set up waymarks for those who

will return by this way (Jeremiah 31v21)

In 1991 it was to these old paths, these ancient paths we turned as we began to seek God in repentance and faith to restore the vocation and vision of the Church in Europe.

It was in Asia Minor that the early church first put down roots. The Community of St. John the Apostle, the last home of  Mother Mary, St. Paul,  the seven churches of the Revelation all were located in Asia Minor. From Asia Minor Christianity was established in Europe and then spread to many parts of the world.

The House that John Built describes the movement of the Holy Spirit that first saw the movement of Christianity from Asia Minor (Modern Turkey) across Europe to Ireland. In particular, it records the influence of the  Community of St. John the Apostle in regard to the emergence of the early Irish/Celtic Christian Communities.

The Celtic Arc is closely linked to the House that John Built and  is a metaphor we adopted to describe that spread of Christianity from Turkey to Ireland and then back from Ireland to Turkey.

The Celtic Arc is a vision for the restoration of the Church in Europe and an outpouring of the Holy Spirit from Turkey to Ireland through new monastic communities and faith communities emerging in European locations that were once significant centers of Christian faith and mission. Their Vocation and Mission:  to pray and work for the spiritual, economic and social renewal of the communities in which they now live.

Finally, the Celtic Arc is a challenge and a call to both individuals and faith communities to have a ‘heart’ for Europe.

This means; identifying a European country, then a region, then a village, town or city on which the Lord would have you focus your prayers.

Then, get to know all you can about its history and people.

As time and circumstances allow go and visit that country and identify with the people and the place.

If the Lord leads, guides and calls you, be willing to relocate and live among that community ,

or look for ways to support the community from a distance.

In 1998 John and Linda left Hetton Hall to focus on pioneering the Celtic Arc and preparing for their move to Turkey.

From a Diary Entry

July 1991


It is only days now before we move to Hetton Hall the new

Mother House of the Northumbria Community.

Linda and I are exhausted.

Years of pioneering the Community and developing a New Monasticism has taken its toll.

I went to the caravan to pray and inadvertently picked up a book Trevor

had given me on the history of the Early Irish Church.

I opened a page with a map of Celtic Mission in Europe.

It was one of those rare and precious

moments when the Lord draws near…As I gazed at the map,

filled with Irish monastic settlements from  Turkey to Ireland

I heard a whisper……. “This is next, dear one….This is next……

John Skinner 1991

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *