Thursday, 12 October 2017

Saint Fiacc of Sletty and Saint Patrick's Gift

Saint Fiacc of Sletty had a bad leg. Saint Patrick heard of it, and sent him a chariot and a pair of horses, to enable him to get about. This aroused the jealousy of Sechnall (Secundinus), another of his missionaries, and he scolded Patrick soundly as giving way to partiality. But after he became cool, Sechnall repented; he had intercepted the present, and he sent it to Mancen, and begged him to forward it to Fiacc. This Mancen did, with an apology; but Fiacc, too charitable to receive a gift that had caused heart-burnings, restored chariot and horses to Patrick, and refused to use them.

Rev. S. Baring-Gould, 'Cornish Dedications of Saints, Part IV' in Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall, Volume 15 (1901-02), 51.

Note: October 12 is the feast day of Saint Fiacc of Sletty, one of the early Irish converts. You can read a post on his life at my other site here.

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille: A Farewell Prayer

As this is the octave day of the feast, we bid farewell to the festival of Saint Colum Cille  with a farewell prayer from our Irish Redemptorist:


 May his children hear his voice and follow in his steps. 

 May we love this loving Saint, and invoke him in our prayers. May his name be given to our Irish children that he may protect them. May his Feast Day, the Ninth of June, be kept holy throughout the Land — a day of prayer and supplication for Ireland and Scotland, a day of rejoicing for our young people in University and College, and in every one of Ireland’s schools. — 
May school and pulpit celebrate each year the glories of St. Columcille’s life. May Ireland’s own Music and Language and Literature be used to praise and glorify him. May Ireland’s new Bards awake and sing the glories of their own Columcille. 

 Columcille is dead, but may Ireland’s love for him never die, and may his protection never fail us; may his memory never perish, nor his spirit depart from our Land! Amen! Amen!

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907), 121. 

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille: 'another Saint John on Patmos'

During the four extra years of life granted to Saint Colum Cille he exercised his gift of prophecy to the full, including the sight of people passing from this world to the next:


 During these four years Columcille was wrapt up in the contemplation of God and heavenly things, and he saw many wonderful things. 

 He exclaimed one day: “I see the soul of Columbanus, the smith, ascending to heaven in the company of the angels! He merited heaven by the labour of his hands and his charity to the poor.” 

 On another occasion he exclaimed in a transport: “O happy woman! O, happy woman! The angels carry your soul to heaven in reward of your virtues.” And after a year Columcille was again heard to say: “I see the soul of that blessed woman coming down from heaven to meet the soul of her husband at death’s hour. See! she is helping the angels to fight the demons who are striving to gain possession of his soul. They have failed! The soul is saved!” 

 He saw the soul of St. Brendan, of Birr, going up to heaven in great glory. Such was the splendour of Brendan’s soul that Columcille saw that it illuminated the whole world. He directed his monks to celebrate a solemn High Mass to thank God for Brendan’s happiness. 

He said a Mass of Thanksgiving for the happy death of the holy Bishop Coleman; and he also saw his soul ascend gloriously to heaven. 

St. Columcille was indeed another St. John in his Island of Patmos, and God revealed to him in Iona many wonderful things about this world and the world to come. 

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907), 110-111.

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille: The Golden Moon Sinking

The hagiographers present Saint Colum Cille as anxious to depart this world and to take his place in heaven. The people among whom he lived, however, had different ideas:


Our dear and blessed Saint was now drawing towards his end. The golden moon, that so long shone bright and full over Ireland and Scotland, was waning — fading away into the glorious dawn of God’s eternal day. 

With St. Paul, our Saint desired to be dissolved and so be with Christ. 

He appeared one day very joyful. Soon, however, he seemed to grow downcast and sad. Two monks were present, Lugbeus from Ireland, and Pilu from England. They asked him why, after such great joy, he became so strangely sad. “I will tell you,” he said, “but promise not to reveal now what I am going to say. With my whole heart I asked God,” he continued, “to let me die when I should have lived thirty years in Scotland, and the Lord heard my prayer; and He had sent angels to bear away my soul after my approaching death. But alas! God has now yielded to the prayers of the Faithful, and has prolonged my life for four years more.”

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907), 108-9. 

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille and Connla the Craftsman

Continuing the series of vignettes from the Life of Saint Colum Cille with the story of Connla the Craftsman. Here Saint Colum Cille uses another of his extraordinary gifts, that of raising the dead to life:


 About this same period he worked a wonderful miracle. There then lived an exceedingly artistic and accomplished man, whose name was Connla. He dwelt in a place known of old as Dim Cruitre (Fort of the Picts), but now called Screen Columcille, or Ardmagilligan. Connla was making a shrine, an exquisite shrine indeed, but, unfortunately, he died before it was completed. When Columcille beheld the unfinished shrine, he greatly desired to see it completed in all its beauty. He was aware, however, there was no artist in Ireland capable of completing the work in all its perfection. An inspiration came into his mind. He went to Connla’s grave, stood before it, and he cried out: “O Connla, in the name of Jesus Christ, arise from the dead ! ”And behold! he that was dead arose full of life and health, and all who were present were filled with awe and amazement and they praised God for His wonderful works. Conla finished the beautiful shrine, and lived to a good old age. 

 The tradesmen and artists of Ireland of that time could not be surpassed by any others in the whole world, and, by God’s blessing, the time is near when the same can be said once more.

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907) ,39. 

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille and the Duel Fought in Ireland

Yesterday we looked at the granting of the gift of prophecy to Saint Colum Cille and today we see an example of this gift in use as our saint, although in Iona, is able to witness events in Ireland:


Columcille one day appeared very sad and troubled. “ What ails you, father ?” said the monks to him. “Alas,” he answered, “ two noblemen are just now fighting a duel in Ireland. They have wounded each other. They are dying.” And such had really happened, as they learnt afterwards. 

“Father,” asked a monk, “how do you get knowledge of hidden things like these?” “There are people,” said Columcille, “and they see the whole world lit up most brilliantly as in one glorious sunbeam.” He was speaking of himself: for it was given him to see everything in the light of God. In the same way, we are told, he saw fire falling from heaven on a town in Italy, destroying its inhabitants on account of their wickedness.

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907), 103. 
Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.

Monday, 12 June 2017

Saint Colum Cille's Angelic Gifts

In Irish tradition Saint Colum Cille had quite a reputation for prophecy, and in today's vignette we see that this was a gift bestowed on him directly by God:


 The Angel appeared again on another day and said: “Beg of God to grant you the three gifts that please you most, and He will give them to you.” “That is good news,” answered Columcille, “and I choose Virginity and Wisdom.” “You made a good choice,” said the Angel; “and you will get in addition to these the gift of Prophecy.” 

No sooner had the Angel left him than there came three most beautiful maidens, and showed by their manner a desire to speak to him. Columcille retired a little to let them pass, for he did not know them. But presently he summoned up courage and addressed them respectfully, asking them who they were. “We are three sisters,” said they, “and the companions offered to you by our father.” “And who is your father?” inquired Columcille. “The Saviour of the World,” said they. “And what are your names?” asked Columcille. “Our names are "Virginity, Wisdom and Prophecy, and we shall be with you always.” They then disappeared from his sight.

 From that day forward Chastity and Wisdom shone in all his words and actions, and God bestowed upon him the gift of Prophecy to foretell future events.

The Life of Saint Columcille in In Irish and English by a Redemptorist Father (Dublin, 1907). 

Content Copyright © Trias Thaumaturga 2012-2017. All rights reserved.