Posted by: dominicanoutreach | June 22, 2009

The Saint and the Fasting Girl

For the past few months I have been following the blog of Anna Richeinda and the development of her book “The Saint and the Fasting Girl”  I got a recent copy I find that this book does present monastic issues, especillay in 16 th century England as accurate in several regards. First, there has been a traditional difference in theology and the issues of control between Bishops and monks. From the time of Athanasius, monks have refused to be controlled by bishops. The mystical theology of the church has always been purer and on a different cource than the theoolgy of the church.  Second, the religious piety of women have always been a challege to the church, especially in the Oriental Orthodox world where women have  made important contributions to the life of the church. (see Susan Harvey and Sebaistian Brock on Holy WOmen in the Syriac Orient). Also in my books regarding women who disguised themselves becoming men and tanslations of Syriac Hagiographies do illustrate the historic tensions between the ecclesiatical control of the church and the indendence of the monasteries. St Athanasius is said to have offered gifts to St Anthony if he would only come under the rule of the Bishop. Anthony refused and returned to his monasteriens where he established a Rule for his monks. Ever since that day, monks have had independent leadership and order.  Even in the 18th century England this was true. Anna Richard has accurately portrayed an important and spiritual tension in a novel way. I recommend this book. Follow the links at


  1. Nice article. Much appreciated,

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