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Archive for the ‘Saints and Martyrs’ Category

Today is the feast day of St. Catherine, patron saint of philosophers.

For a little bit about her life and why some churches celebrate St. Catherine’s day on the 24th, read this piece from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Online Chapel:

Saint Catherine, who was from Alexandria, was the daughter of Constas (or Cestus). She was an exceedingly beautiful maiden, most chaste, and illustrious in wealth, lineage, and learning. By her steadfast understanding, she utterly vanquished the passionate and unbridled soul of Maximinus, the tyrant of Alexandria; and by her eloquence, she stopped the mouths of the so-called philosophers who had been gathered to dispute with her. She was crowned with the crown of martyrdom in the year 305. Her holy relics were taken by Angels to the holy mountain of Sinai, where they were discovered many years later; the famous monastery of Saint Catherine was originally dedicated to the Holy Transfiguration of the Lord and the Burning Bush, but later was dedicated to Saint Catherine. According to the ancient usage, Saints Catherine and Mercurius were celebrated on the 24th of this month, whereas the holy Hieromartyrs Clement of Rome and Peter of Alexandria were celebrated on the 25th. The dates of the feasts of these Saints were interchanged at the request of the Church and Monastery of Mount Sinai, so that the festival of Saint Catherine, their patron, might be celebrated more festively together with the Apodosis of the Feast of the Entry of the Theotokos. The Slavic Churches, however, commemorate these Saints on their original dates.

A fuller account of her life can be found here.

Troparion of Great Martyr Katherine Tone 5
Let us praise Katherine, protectress of Sinai,
Bride of Christ and our helper.
With the sword of the Spirit she silenced the wisdom of the wicked.
She is crowned as a martyr and asks mercy for us all.

Kontakion of Great Martyr Katherine Tone 2
You lovers of martyrs raise a chorus now
in honour of wise Katherine.
She preached Christ in the stadium
and spat on the knowledge of philosophers.

Holy and Great Martyr, All-Wise Catherine, pray for us that we may take captive every thought to the obedience of Christ, and pray that we may be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven.

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Troparion of St Patrick Tone 4
Most glorious art Thou, Christ our God/ Who didst establish our Father Patrick/ as the Enlightener of the Irish and a torch-bearer on earth,/ and through him didst guide many to the true Faith./ Most Compassionate One, glory to Thee.

Apolytikion of St Patrick Tone 3
O Holy Hierarch, equal of the Apostles, Saint Patrick, wonderworker and enlightener of Ireland: Intercede with the merciful God that He grant unto our souls forgiveness of offences.

Kontakion of St Patrick Tone 4
The Master revealed thee as a skilful fisher of men; and casting forth nets of Gospel preaching, thou drewest up the heathen to piety. Those who were the children of idolatrous darkness thou didst render sons of day through holy Baptism. O Patrick, intercede for us who hounour thy memory.

The Confessio of St. Patrick; same translation here – and in .pdf here (the Latin text)

St. Patrick’s Letter to the soldiers of Coroticus (the Latin text)

On St. Patrick and the Shamrock


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Troparion Tone 1

By thine ascetical struggles, O Godbearing Benedict,/ thou didst prove true to thy name./ For thou wast the son of benediction, and didst become a model and rule/ to all who emulate thy life and cry:/ Glory to Him Who has strengthened thee; glory to Him Who has crowned thee;/ glory to Him Who through thee works healings for all.

Kontakion Tone 8

Like a sun of the Dayspring from on high/ thou didst enlighten the monks of the West and instruct them by word and deed./ By the sweat of thine ascetical achievements/ purge from the filth of passions us who honour thee and cry:/ Rejoice, O Father Benedict.

Prayer to St. Benedict of Nursia

O holy Father, St. Benedict, blessed by God both in grace and in name, who, while standing in prayer, with hands raised to heaven, didst most happily yield thy angelic spirit into the hands of thy Creator, and hast promised zealously to defend against all the snares of the enemy in the last struggle of death, those who shall daily remind thee of thy glorious departure and heavenly joys; protect me, I beseech thee, O glorious Father, this day and every day, by thy holy blessings, that I may never be separated from our dear Lord, from the society of thyself, and of all the blessed. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

[Note: In the West, St. Benedict's death is celebrated 21 March, and his feast day is celebrated 11 July]

St. Gregory the Great’s Life of St. Benedict

An account of the uncovering of St. Benedict’s relics

The Rule of St. Benedict (in English)

Regula Sancti Benedicti

About the Rule of St. Benedict

About the medal of St. Benedict

About St. Scholastica, St. Benedict’s twin sister

A brief account of St. Benedict, his life and influence (Roman Catholic Order of St. Benedict website)

From the OCA Website:

Saint Benedict, founder of Western monasticism, was born in the Italian city of Nursia in the year 480. When he was fourteen years of age, the saint’s parents sent him to Rome to study. Unsettled by the immorality around him, he decided to devote himself to a different sort of life.

At first St. Benedict settled near the church of the holy Apostle Peter in the village of Effedum, but news of his ascetic life compelled him to go farther into the mountains. There he encountered the hermit Romanus, who tonsured him into monasticism and directed him to live in a remote cave at Subiaco. From time to time, the hermit would bring him food.

For three years the saint waged a harsh struggle with temptations and conquered them. People soon began to gather to him, thirsting to live under his guidance. The number of disciples grew so much, that the saint divided them into twelve communities. Each community was comprised of twelve monks and was a separate skete. The saint gave each skete an igumen from among his experienced disciples, and only the novice monks remained with St. Benedict for instruction.

The strict monastic Rule St. Benedict established for the monks was not accepted by everyone, and more than once he was criticized and abused by dissenters.

Finally he settled in Campagna and on Mount Cassino he founded the Monte Cassino monastery, which for a long time was a center of theological education for the Western Church. The monastery possessed a remarkable library. St. Benedict wrote his Rule, based on the experience of life of the Eastern desert-dwellers and the precepts of St. John Cassian the Roman (February 29).

The Rule of St. Benedict dominated Western monasticism for centuries (by the year 1595 it had appeared in more than 100 editions). The Rule prescribed the renunciation of personal possessions, as well as unconditional obedience, and constant work. It was considered the duty of older monks to teach the younger and to copy ancient manuscripts. This helped to preserve many memorable writings from the first centuries of Christianity.

Every new monk was required to live as a novice for a year, to learn the monastic Rule and to become acclimated to monastic life. Every deed required a blessing. The head of this cenobitic monastery is the igumen. He discerns, teaches, and explains. The igumen solicits the advice of the older, experienced brethren, but he makes the final decisions. Keeping the monastic Rule was strictly binding for everyone and was regarded as an important step on the way to perfection.

St. Benedict was granted by the Lord the gift of foresight and wonderworking. He healed many by his prayers. The monk foretold the day of his death in 547. The main source for his Life is the second Dialogue of St. Gregory.

St. Benedict’s sister, St. Scholastica (February 10), also became famous for her strict ascetic life and was numbered among the saints.

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As mentioned in my previous post, I purchased a St Benedict medal when in Rome in the summer of ’98. The following is some information about the medal:

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One side of the medal bears an image of St. Benedict, holding a cross in the right hand and the Holy Rule in the left. On the one side of the image is a cup, on the other a raven, and above the cup and the raven are inscribed the words: “Crux Sancti Patris Benedicti” (Cross of the Holy Father Benedict). Round the margin of the medal stands the legend “Ejus in obitu nro praesentia muniamus” (May we at our death be fortified by his presence).

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The reverse of the medal bears a cross with the initial letters of the words: “Crux Sacra Sit Mihi Lux” (The Holy Cross be my light), written downward on the perpendicular bar; the initial letters of the words, “Non Draco Sit Mihi Dux” (Let not the dragon be my guide), on the horizontal bar; and the initial letters of “Crux Sancti Patris Benedicti” in the angles of the cross. Round the margin stand the initial letters of the distich: “Vade Retro Satana, Nunquam Suade Mihi Vana — Sunt Mala Quae Libas, Ipse Venena Bibas” (Begone, Satan, do not suggest to me thy vanities — evil are the things thou profferest, drink thou thy own poison). At the top of the cross usually stands the word Pax (peace) or the monogram I H S (Jesus).

More from the article:

The medal just described is the so-called jubilee medal, which was struck first in 1880, to commemorate the fourteenth centenary of St. Benedict’s birth. The Archabbey of Monte Cassino has the exclusive right to strike this medal. The ordinary medal of St. Benedict usually differs from the preceding in the omission of the words “Ejus in obitu etc.”, and in a few minor details. (For the indulgences connected with it see Beringer, “Die Ablässe”, Paderborn, 1906, p. 404-6.) The habitual wearer of the jubilee medal can gain all the indulgences connected with the ordinary medal and, in addition: (1) all the indulgences that could be gained by visiting the basilica, crypt, and tower of St. Benedict at Monte Cassino (Pius IX, 31 December, 1877); (2) a plenary indulgence on the feast of All Souls (from about two o’clock in the afternoon of 1 November to sunset of 2 November), as often as (toties quoties), after confession and Holy Communion, he visits any church or public oratory, praying there according to the intention of the pope, provided that he is hindered from visiting a church or public oratory of the Benedictines by sickness, monastic enclosure or a distance of at least 1000 steps. (Decr. 27 February, 1907, in Acta S. Sedis, LX, 246.) Any priest may receive the faculties to bless these medals.

It is doubtful when the Medal of St. Benedict originated. During a trial for witchcraft at Natternberg near the Abbey of Metten in Bavaria in the year 1647, the accused women testified that they had no power over Metten, which was under the protection of the cross. Upon investigation, a number of painted crosses, surrounded by the letters which are now found on Benedictine medals, were found on the walls of the abbey, but their meaning had been forgotten. Finally, in an old manuscript, written in 1415, was found a picture representing St. Benedict holding in one hand a staff which ends in a cross, and a scroll in the other. On the staff and scroll were written in full the words of which the mysterious letters were the initials. Medals bearing the image of St. Benedict, a cross, and these letters began now to be struck in Germany, and soon spread over Europe. They were first approved by Benedict XIV in his briefs of 23 December, 1741, and 12 March, 1742.

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I first became aware of St. Benedict during my time at a Protestant Bible college, specifically during spring semester of 1990. I was in a period of my life where I began to search for the historic Church, and a period of spiritual struggle when I became extremely dissatsified with the way of life my heritage churches, and evangelical Christianity in general, had given me for spiritual growth. I had been for a long time just spinning my wheels with the schema of morning devotions (read a couple of chapters in the Bible and pray), praise choruses, and church attendance. I wanted something more. My searches combined in a return to the historic Church and monasticism.

If you read anything about monasticism in the West, you pretty quickly come across St. Benedict of Nursia. And I did. I happened across a book by Esther de Waal, entitled Living with Contradiction, which contained the whole of the Prologue to the saint’s Rule, and a bit more than a hundred pages of meditations and reflections on the themes of the Prologue. I was instantly hooked. I didn’t know much about St. Benedict himself, nor even about what role the saints played in the Church, but I knew enough to realize St. Benedict was a teacher and father in God from whom I could learn much.

It was only a handful of months later that one of those serendipitous, coincidental moments happened that later leave you wondering if a divine appointment, unbeknownst to oneself, had occurred. I had gone with some classmates and a professor to our sister school for a conference, and happened one of the afternoons to be in the campus bookstore. As I browsed the shelves without any real purpose, other than to look for titles that might interest me, my eyes happened to notice a little red pocketsized book entitled RB 1980: The Rule of St. Benedict in English. It was $1.99. Without a second’s hesitation, I picked it up and made my way to the checkout to buy it.

Over the years since then, I have read several books on St. Benedict and his Rule, and my relationship with him has grown. For many years his role in my life was simply that of teacher. I tried to emulate the balance in my life that his Rule exhibits; proportionate time for work, study and prayer. Eventually I began to pray the hours of the Church, and his Rule guided me in praying the Psalter and reading the Scriptures. As an Episcopalian, I grew to appreciate his life in ways I had not as a Restoration Movement Christian, but he was still a teacher more than anything else. When I was in Rome several years ago, I purchased one of the saint’s medals, and wore it from time to time. I became associated with a Benedictine monastery in the Episcopal Church, and went there a handful of times on retreat.

But it wasn’t until I began moving toward the Orthodox Church that I realized the role of the saints in the life of the Church and the individual believer. I grew to understand that without me realizing it, St. Benedict had become one of my patron saints. (The other is Blessed Hieromonk Seraphim of Platina, who is as yet not formally canonized.) In the fifteen years since I first met St. Benedict, I cannot knowingly attribute any dramatic and miraculous answers to prayer. St. Benedict does not work quite that way in my life. Rather, after coming to Orthodoxy I simply began to ask his intercessions daily and to daily venerate his icons: to pray that I might crucify the passions, be attentive in my prayers, and become more like Christ. One thing I can attribute to his answered prayers for me is for my strengthening in the Church’s disciplines and to being mindful of the passions when they are as yet but thoughts.

I now regularly read from his Rule, and at lunch often read selections from his Life by St. Gregory the Dialogist (whose feast we celebrated this past Monday). I still go to the Rule for guidance, not only when I seek to reassert balance to my life, but for teaching on simply struggling in the Christian faith toward theosis. My own experience is that St. Benedict is a faithful and sure guide.

God is glorified in his saints, and the glory of God shines brightly in the life and witness of St. Benedict. Holy Father of Monks, pray for us, that we may be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven.

[Note: I have posted the prologue to St. Benedict's Rule on my Wisdom blog here. ]

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stgregorydialogist
Troparion of St Gregory Tone 3
Thou didst excellently dispense the Word of God,/ endowed with discretion of speech, O Hierarch Gregory;/ for by thy life thou didst set the virtues before us,/ and dost radiate the brightness of holiness./ O Righteous Father, pray to Christ our God to grant us His great mercy.

Kontakion of St Gregory Tone 8
We praise thee, God-inspired harp of the Church and God-possessed tongue of wisdom;/ for thou didst prove to be an image and model of the Apostles and didst emulate their zeal./ Wherefore we cry to thee: Rejoice, O Gregory the Dialogist.

The Pastoral Rule of St. Gregory (starts with Part I, clicking on the “> Page” button at the top and bottom of the page brings you to the next part; entire Rule is available online)

The Dialogues of St. Gregory (starts with Book I, clicking on the “> Page” button at the top and bottom of the page brings you to the next book; entire Dialogues are available online; Book II is the life of St. Benedict)
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Troparion Tone 6
In thy divine teachings thou wast a physician for souls, O Father Cassian,/ and setting aright the thoughts of monastics by grace,/ thou didst lead them to life everlasting./ Wherefore, we all honor thee with love.

Kontakion Tone 2
Having delighted in discipline, abstinence, and continence,/ O divinely wise one,/ and having bridled your carnal desires,/ you were seen increasing in faith./ And you flourished like the tree of life in the midst of Eden,/ O all-blessed, most sacred Father Cassian.

Note: St. John’s feast day is actually 29 February, but is translated in non-leap-years to 28 February.

St John’s The Institutes (begin) and The Conferences (begin) are among his most well-known works, but he also has an anti-Nestorian work On the Incarnation (begin).

St. John is also falsely by some in the West labelled a semi-Pelagian, and his synergisitic understanding of grace called a heresy. I defend him against such misunderstandings and calumny in my “St John Cassian: On Grace and Free Will” (a part of the soteriology diablog).

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Troparion of St Leo Tone 3
Thou wast the Church’s instrument/ in strengthening the Church’s teaching of true doctrine;/ thou didst shine forth from the West like a sun/ and didst dispel the heretics’ error./ O righteous Leo, entreat Christ our God to grant us His great mercy.

Kontakion of St Leo Tone 3
From the throne of thy priesthood, O glorious one,/ thou didst stop the mouths of the spiritual lions;/ thou didst illumine thy flock with the light of the knowledge of God/ and with the inspired doctrines of the Holy Trinity./ Thou art glorified as a divine initiate of the grace of God.

The Tome of St. Leo

Catholic Encyclopedia article on St. Leo
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Troparion of St Photios the Great Tone 5
As a radiant beacon of wisdom hidden in God,/ and a defender of Orthodoxy revealed from on high,/ O great Photios, adornment of Patriarchs,/ thou dost refute the innovations of boastful heresy,/ O light of the holy Church,/ preserve her from all error,/ O luminary of the East.

Kontakion of St Photios the Great Tone 8
With garlands of chant let us crown the Church’s far-shining star,/ the God-inspired guide of the Orthodox, the divinely sounded harp of the Spirit and steadfast adversary of heresy/ and let us cry to him: Rejoice, O most venerable Photios.

From the Prolog:

Photius was a great beacon of the Church. He was the emperor’s relative and a grandson of the glorious Patriarch Tarasius. He was a vigorous protector of the Church from the authority-loving pope and other Roman distortions of the Faith. In six days he went through all the ranks from a layman to patriarch. He was consecrated patriarch on Christmas day, 857 A.D. and died in the Lord in the year 891 A.D.

A life of St. Photios from the OCA website:

Saint Photius, Patriarch of Constantinople, “the Church’s far-gleaming beacon,” lived during the ninth century, and came from a family of zealous Christians. His father Sergius died as a martyr in defense of holy icons. St Photius received an excellent education and, since his family was related to the imperial house, he occupied the position of first state secretary in the Senate. His contemporaries said of him: “He so distinguished himself with knowledge in almost all the secular sciences, that it rightfully might be possible to take into account the glory of his age and compare it with the ancients.”

Michael, the young successor to the throne, and St Cyril, the future Enlightener of the Slavs, were taught by him. His deep Christian piety protected St Photius from being seduced by the charms of court life. With all his soul, he yearned for monasticism.

In 857 Bardas, who ruled with Emperor Michael, deposed Patriarch Ignatius (October 23) from the See of Constantinople. The bishops, knowing the piety and extensive knowledge of Photius, informed the emperor that he was a man worthy to occupy the archpastoral throne. St Photius accepted the proposal with humility. He passed through all the clerical ranks in six days. On the day of the Nativity of Christ, he was consecrated bishop and elevated to the patriarchal throne.

Soon, however, discord arose within the Church, stirred up by the removal of Patriarch Ignatius from office. The Synod of 861 was called to end the unrest, at which the deposition of Ignatius and the installation of Photius as patriarch were confirmed.

Pope Nicholas I, whose envoys were present at this council, hoped that by recognizing Photius as patriarch he could subordinate him to his power. When the new patriarch proved unsubmissive, Nicholas anathematized Photius at a Roman council.

Until the end of his life St Photius was a firm opponent of papal intrigues and designs upon the Orthodox Church of the East. In 864, Bulgaria voluntarily converted to Christianity. The Bulgarian prince Boris was baptized by Patriarch Photius himself. Later, St Photius sent an archbishop and priests to baptize the Bulgarian people. In 865, Sts Cyril and Methodius were sent to preach Christ in the Slavonic language. However, the partisans of the Pope incited the Bulgarians against the Orthodox missionaries.

The calamitous situation in Bulgaria developed because an invasion by the Germans forced them to seek help in the West, and the Bulgarian prince requested the Pope to send his bishops. When they arrived in Bulgaria, the papal legates began to substitute Latin teachings and customs in place of Orthodox belief and practice. St Photius, as a firm defender of truth and denouncer of falsehood, wrote an encyclical informing the Eastern bishops of the Pope’s actions, indicating that the departure of the Roman Church from Orthodoxy was not only in ritual, but also in its confession of faith. A council was convened, censuring the arrogance of the West.

In 867, Basil the Macedonian seized the imperial throne, after murdering the emperor Michael. St Photius denounced the murderer and would not permit him to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ. Therefore, he was removed from the patriarchal throne and locked in a monastery under guard, and Patriarch Ignatius was restored to his position.

The Synod of 869 met to investigate the conduct of St Photius. This council took place with the participation of papal legates, who demanded that the participants sign a document (Libellus) condemning Photius and recognizing the primacy of the Pope. The Eastern bishops would not agree to this, and argued with the legates. Summoned to the council, St Photius met all the accusations of the legates with a dignified silence. Only when the judges asked him whether he wished to repent did he reply, “Why do you consider yourselves judges?” After long disputes, the opponents of Photius were victorious. Although their judgment was baseless, they anathematized Patriarch Photius and the bishops defending him. The saint was sent to prison for seven years, and by his own testimony, he thanked the Lord for patiently enduring His judges.

During this time the Latin clergy were expelled from Bulgaria, and Patriarch Ignatius sent his bishops there. In 879, two years after the death of Patriarch Ignatius, another council was summoned (many consider it the Eighth Ecumenical Council), and again St Photius was acknowledged as the lawful archpastor of the Church of Constantinople. Pope John VIII, who knew Photius personally, declared through his envoys that the former papal decisions about Photius were annulled. The council acknowledged the unalterable character of the Nicean-Constantinople Creed, rejecting the Latin distortion (“filioque”), and acknowledging the independence and equality of both thrones and both churches (Western and Eastern). The council decided to abolish Latin usages and rituals in the Bulgarian church introduced by the Roman clergy, who ended their activities there.

Under Emperor Basil’s successor, Leo, St Photius again endured false denunciations, and was accused of speaking against the emperor. Again deposed from his See in 886, the saint completed the course of his life in 891. He was buried at the monastery of Eremia.

The Orthodox Church venerates St Photius as a “pillar and foundation of the Church,” an “inspired guide of the Orthodox,” and a wise theologian. He left behind several works, exposing the errors of the Latins, refuting soul-destroying heresies, explicating Holy Scripture, and exploring many aspects of the Faith.

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Saint Brigid of Kildare

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[Our daughter Delaina's patron saint]

Troparion of St Brigid of Kildare Tone 1
O holy Brigid, thou didst become sublime through thy humility,/ and didst fly on the wings of thy longing for God./ When thou didst arrive in the Eternal City and appear before thy Divine Spouse,/ wearing the crown of virginity,/ thou didst keep thy promise/ to remember those who have recourse to thee./ Thou dost shower grace upon the world, and dost multiply miracles./ Intercede with Christ our God that He may save our souls.

Kontakion of St Brigid Tone 4
The holy virgin Brigid full of divine wisdom,/ went with joy along the way of evangelical childhood,/ and with the grace of God/ attained in this way the summit of virtue./ Wherefore she now bestows blessings upon those who come to her with faith./ O holy Virgin, intercede with Christ our God/ that He may have mercy on our souls.

From the OCA website:

Saint Brigid, “the Mary of the Gael,” was born around 450 in Faughart, about two miles from Dundalk in County Louth. According to Tradition, her father was a pagan named Dubthach, and her mother was Brocessa (Broiseach), one of his slaves.

Even as a child, she was known for her compassion for the poor. She would give away food, clothing, and even her father’s possessions to the poor. One day he took Brigid to the king’s court, leaving her outside to wait for him. He asked the king to buy his daughter from him, since her excessive generosity made her too expensive for him to keep. The king asked to see the girl, so Dubthach led him outside. They were just in time to see her give away her father’s sword to a beggar. This sword had been presented to Dubthach by the king, who said, “I cannot buy a girl who holds us so cheap.”

St Brigid received monastic tonsure at the hands of St Mael of Ardagh (February 6). Soon after this, she established a monastery on land given to her by the King of Leinster. The land was called Cill Dara (Kildare), or “the church of the oak.” This was the beginning of women’s cenobitic monasticism in Ireland.

The miracles performed by St Brigid are too numerous to relate here, but perhaps one story will suffice. One evening the holy abbess was sitting with the blind nun Dara. From sunset to sunrise they spoke of the joys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and of the love of Christ, losing all track of time. St Brigid was struck by the beauty of the earth and sky in the morning light. Realizing that Sister Dara was unable to appreciate this beauty, she became very sad. Then she prayed and made the Sign of the Cross over Dara’s eyes. All at once, the blind nun’s eyes were opened and she saw the sun in the east, and the trees and flowers sparkling with dew. She looked for a while, then turned to St Brigid and said, “Close my eyes again, dear Mother, for when the world is visible to the eyes, then God is seen less clearly by the soul.” St Brigid prayed again, and Dara became blind once more.

St Brigid fell asleep in the Lord in the year 523 after receiving Holy Communion from St Ninnidh of Inismacsaint (January 18). She was buried at Kildare, but her relics were transferred to Downpatrick during the Viking invasions. It is believed that she was buried in the same grave with St Patrick (March 17) and St Columba of Iona (June 9).

Late in the thirteenth century, her head was brought to Portugal by three Irish knights on their way to fight in the Holy Land. They left this holy relic in the parish church of Lumiar, about three miles from Lisbon. Portions of the relic were brought back to Ireland in 1929 and placed in a new church of St Brigid in Dublin.

The relics of St Brigid in Ireland were destroyed in the sixteenth century by Lord Grey during the reign of Henry VIII.

The tradition of making St Brigid’s crosses from rushes and hanging them in the home is still followed in Ireland, where devotion to her is still strong. She is also venerated in northern Italy, France, and Wales.

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