Yesterday we celebrated the Feast of Samhain, the time of year when our Celtic ancestors had a sense of the thinness of the veil which separates this world from the next. Today, November 1st, we celebrate the feast of All Saints.
The Celtic tradition is marked by a great love of *Kith and kin” and that love includes the saints. The Celtic Christian took St. Paul’s words in Hebrews 12:1 “Seeing we are surrounded with so great a crowd of witness” to be true in a literal sense.
There is a sense of intimacy and familiarity with the Saints. They are regarded very much as friends and companions in this world. The Celtic Christian believed the saints were with them as they went about their daily tasks.
Alive in the presence of the Risen Christ the saints walk with us, guide us, befriend us, pray for us. We constantly invoke the Saints to pray for us in the Litany of the saints. In the words of Esther de Waal in The Celtic Way of Prayer, Celtic Saints are approachable, close at hand, woven quite naturally into life just as would be any other member of an extended family.”
Many of the early Irish saints were recognised by the people as the ones who let the Light of Christ shine through them. St. Brigid of Kildare spread that light with the establishment of her monastery in 5th century Ireland. The light was symbolically re-lit in Kildare in 1993 and burns as a beacon of hope, justice and peace for our world today.
We invoke the protection of St. Brigid and all the saints during these difficult days of the Covid 19 pandemic.
You might like to visit a holy well in your locality and invoke the protection of the local saint for you and your family at this time.
Visit the Solas Bhride Facebook page tomorrow for a remembrance reflection, in the meantime I will leave you with this blessing
May St.Brigid keep you and yours from all harm,
May she bless your kith and kin, the hearth and house and all within.
God and Brigid go with you
Before you to show you the way
Beside you to befriend you
Behind you to encourage you
Above you to watch over you
And within you to give you hope.
“Faoi bhrat Bhride sinne go leir – may we all be under the shelter of Brigid’s cloak.”
St. Brigid pray for us.