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St Brigid of Ireland (Kildare, c.451 - 1 February 525)
“Remind us how to kindle the hearth, to keep it bright, to preserve the flame ... the protection of Brigid keeping us from harm, from ignorance, from heartlessness...”
“Brigid’s feast day is 1 February, which was originally a festival called Imbolc, marking the beginning of spring. From 2023 it will be a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland, the first named after a woman.” Wikipedia
This icon was commissioned by my dear friend Fr Scott Brubaker for his church of St Brigid in Mesa, Arizona.
There are so many evocative and poetically beautiful legends around St Brigid I decided to just share a link to them so you can begin to discover Brigid. One of my favorites is that Brigid was “accidentally” ordained a priest or in some legends, a bishop; one of her iconographic symbols is a bishop’s crozier. Her prayers were said to still the wind and rain. The fire lit by Brigid in the fifth century, is kept burning by St Brigid’s community of religious women who live in Kildare. Look into this lovely prayer 🔥
St Brigid’s Hearth Keeper Prayer
“Brigid of the Mantle, encompass us,
Lady of the Lambs, protect us.
Beneath your mantle, gather us,
And restore us to memory.
Mothers of our mother, Foremothers strong.
Guide our hands in yours,
Remind us how to kindle the hearth.
To keep it bright, to preserve the flame.
Your hands upon ours, Our hands within yours.
To kindle the light, both day and night.
The Mantle of Brigid about us.
The Memory of Brigid within us.
The Protection of Brigid keeping us
From harm, from ignorance, from heartlessness.
This day and night,
From dawn till dark,
From dark till dawn.
Fr William Hart McNichols ☘️ February 2022