The Guardian just ran a cool feature on the Byzantine “ghost towns” of the Syrian desert. I talk a bit about these in my book The Resilient Church. I also discussed them in a blog post, some time back.
Here’s a snip from the Guardian …
We walked back down the hill and set off for the region’s most famous historical site, the shrine of St Simeon Stylites. The vast ruined church, the most ambitious structure on earth in the late fifth century, contains the stump of the pillar where St Simon supposedly spent the last 36 years of his life until his death in 459AD. He was said to eat once a week, frugally of course.
One thought on “Ghost Towns of the Fathers”
Interesting but rather melancholic article. It reminded me that while the Church will not perish,this does not guarantee that it will not become extinct in some parts of the world. What if a thousand years from now a pilgrim from Africa will visit the empty ruins of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC for example? How sad that will be, but very possible, a ruined church in the remains of a fallen empire (The American Empire instead of the Byzantine, if the Lord does not come first).
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