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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

I will leave these up for today, but then take them down. :)






This is one of my very favorite holidays. We are Irish and even though the "traditional Saint Patrick's Day meal" isn't particularly Irish (save for the potatoes!) I grew up on it. It has become a tradition in our family.

And just in case you would like to know a little more about the real Saint Patrick, the man Maewyn Succat, you can read here.

The Book of Kells is one of the great treasures of Ireland. I have an special affinity for hand-written manuscripts, but especially so for ones with a great story. It is understood that Irish Columban monks living on the remote Scottish island Iona, created this manuscript around the year 750. Iona was the center of St. Columba’s influence, and was where his church was located. The Book of Kells contains the four gospels, a section of Hebrew names, and the Eusebian canons, and it is also known as the “Book of Columba.” In 878 “The Annals of Ulster record that following another Viking attack, the shrine of Colm Cille and 'other relics' are taken to Ireland.” How can it get worse than to be plundered by Vikings? (It can!) In 1066 "The Book is stolen for its cover of gold, inset with precious stones. Months later it is found buried under sods of earth in a bog, without its cover." After this point it was evidently kept fairly together, but the final restoration and binding did not happen until 1953!

Here are a few of the pages of this beautiful treasure. If you click on them, they will enlarge so that you can see what they really look like. Just gorgeous!





And here is part of a prayer penned by Saint Patrick.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

Amen! Have a beautiful day.

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