St Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland is shrouded in so many fantastical stories that one wonders if he was a man at all. The real Patrick was a simple human being who was kind, gentle, courageous, and confident in his beliefs. True, he was larger than life but not the way most people think.
Maewyn Succat is the name given at birth to the man we know as Patrickof Ireland around the end of the 4th century. Most likely, he was born in Britain and the son of a Roman deacon named Calpornius who was also a tax collector. His grandfather was Potius during the reign of Constantine the Great, first Christian emperor of the Romans so it is easy to see how Patrick would be influenced in ‘the family business’ from an early age on. As one of Roman nobility, a station of honor and privilege, Patrick would have had hereditary privileges as well. His father would have had high hopes for his son, knowing he could one day rule over his less fortunate countrymen. Continue reading →
Pope Francis is my hero. For years. Catholicism ruled much of Ireland and there are those who believe it still does. Ar least, 80% of Irish schools are still Catholic and even with history dug up from the Magalene laundries .. to priest pedophiles .. to the power the church had to take children away from single mothers and fathers .. Catholicism still thrives today. In fact, according to the viewpoints and actions of Pope Francis, the church has more responsibility than just making an atonement for her sins. Continue reading →
Irish saints are a mainstay of Irish history. A sixth-century monk named Brendan, who would later become known as St. Brendan the Navigator, set out in his tiny seal skin boat with his fellow abbots to a far away land called Hibernia, the name given to Ireland by the Greeks. They voyaged across the cold Atlantic shores toward a wild, mostly untamed territory. They were looking for grace or a way to come closer to God.They came from Britannia (England), Germania (Germany), and Rome as well as all over Western Europe. They wrote Latin and poetry, spoke different languages and came from the highest social ranks. After blending with the Irish, they became the record keepers of genealogies and stories. They became known as the most learned men of Europe. Whether they learned from the Celts or the Celts learned from them is inconsequential. The first Irish monks in Ireland were born .. and Ireland would be changed forever by their arrival.. Continue reading →
Bevin would never have believed that a man she trusted like a brother would have betrayed her so easily. But here she was. Seated adrift for all she knew. No shore in sight. Arms and legs tied. Blood pooled in her wrists so that her fingers felt like dead wood. She felt cold, confused, and dazed as a newborn calf. Was she hallucinating, she wondered, brought on by the intensity of the birth? She had felt the same when her son was born, had labored in agony for days. Even when it was all over, she remembered his birth continued to haunt her. She had dreamt of something inside her clawing at her bones, a sense of being ripped and scraped from the inside out, the child ‘s head squeezing and pushing. This was not like that however. How many days had it been since the birth? Two? Three? Four maybe. She felt no pain at the moment. Only terrifying rage.