Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Good Night Blessing - Psalm 30 reflection

In times of need

Abraham - Liverpool Christ the King

In your great heart I place my own, O Lord
Let the rhythm of my life follow your desire.
In your knowing of me 
Let me know myself

Feel the flutterings of fear, O Lord
As a fledging shivers for its mother
Let your wings be a shield around me
Holding me close

You are all and everything to me, O Lord 
Gatekeeper and shepherd you lead me home
I fear neither the howling of wolves 
nor shrieks of carrion birds
Your arm defends me

Into your great heart I place my own, O Lord
In your knowing of me 
Let me know myself

Blessed be


Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Feast of Brendan the Navigator

St. Brendan of Ardfert and Clonfert, known also as Brendan the Voyager, was born  near the present city of Tralee, County Kerry, in 484; he died at Enachduin, now Annaghdown, in 577. 

For five years he was educated under St. Ita, "the Brigid of Munster", and he completed his studies under St. Erc, who ordained him in 512. Between the years 512 and 530 St. Brendan built monastic cells at Ardfert, and at Shanakeel or Baalynevinoorach, at the foot of Brandon Hill. It was from here that he set out on his famous seven year voyage for the Land of Delight together with anything from eighteen to one hundred and fifty brother monks.

The old Irish Calendars assigned a special feast for the "Egressio familiae S. Brendani", on 22 March; and St Aengus the Culdee, in his Litany, at the close of the eighth century, invokes "the sixty who accompanied St. Brendan in his quest of the Land of Promise". As part of the journey, it is said that he and his monks came to ground on a small island that was actually the back of a great whale. Whether the journey was factual, geographical, spiritual or legend is continually under debate. Many historians and archaeologists offer their theories whilst navigators, shipwrights and sailors test their own skills to prove or disprove the tales. Perhaps their first question should not be 'is it true?' but rather 'what does this tell us?'. 

The inspiration of the voyage, brought pilgrims and students flocking to Ardfert. In a few years, many religious houses were formed at Gallerus, Kilmalchedor, Brandon Hill, and the Blasquet Islands, in order to care for those who came for spiritual guidance to St. Brendan.

Having established the See of Ardfert, St. Brendan proceeded to Thomond, and founded a monasteryat Inis-da-druim. He then journeyed to Wales, and to Iona. After a three years' mission in Britain he returned to Ireland, and followed his missionary path to Leinster, especially at Dysart,Killiney, and Brandon Hill. He founded the Sees of Ardfert, and of Annaghdown, and established churches at Inchiquin, County Galway, and at Inishglora, County Mayo. 

After his death,  St. Brendan was buried in Clonfert, and his feast is kept on 16th May.

A Brendan Blessing

May your life be held in the coracle of the Father's hand
May His vision be your sextant and compass 
May His Creation be a wonder to your eyes

May your life be held in the nets of His gentle Son
May his friendship be your crew and your navigator
May his peace be your food and your drink

May your life be held in the sails of the Spirit's breath
May her light be your stars and your charts
May she guide you through doldrums and storms 

May your journey be blessed by the Sacred Three
May you set forth each day for the Kingdom
May your heart be restless 'til you reach the Western shore

Blessed be


Friday, 11 May 2012

Sanctuary of the Lord

Drawn from Psalm 46

I rest in the Sanctuary of the Lord
Knowing that God alone is my refuge.
I am deafened by the worlds demands
Overwhelmed by its rages and torments

The seas swell and the mountains quake
The uproar of mans greed echoes through the night

Angry voices call out for revenge
Broken hearts for rescue.

But not here

Here is a Holy Place

This, my refuge
Deep as a mountain pool
Hopeful as the dawn sun
The home of the Most High

Heart’s ease is here
Soul’s friend is here
Spirit’s food is here

My Lord and my God

The Lord speaks and the world melts away

Be still and know that I am God
Be still and know
Be still