- Pathfinder

Reply To: What were some of your primary takeaways after reading Christianity in the First 1000 Years? Did anything surprise you?

Kaitlyn Renfer

“Christianity in the First 1000 Years” reminded me of the vast untold history of Christianity in the Near East and Asia. It seems like Christians in the West often focus on the spread of the Christian faith to Europe and America and forget that Christianity also traveled East to Asia and beyond. One thing that stood out to me was the importance of monasticism in the East. The monks in the East influenced Christian communities and theological beliefs of their day, helping spread Christianity while attempting to draw closer to God through self-denial and devotion. It was also interesting to note that during the 13th century, Asia was at a religious crossroads when Mongol ruler Kublai Khan expressed openness to Christianity. Although future Mongol rulers embraced Islam, Kublai Khan’s interest in the Christian faith indicates that Christian monks and missionaries were active in spreading their faith further East in accordance with the Great Commission.