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Three Celtic Quotes for St. Patrick’s Day

March 17, 2013

Jesu – Son of the Virgin pure,
Be thou my pilgrim-staff throughout the lands, throughout the lands,
Thy love in all my thoughts, thy likeness in my face,
May I heart-warm to others, and they heart-warm to me,
For love of the love of thee, for love of the love of thee.
(Source Unknown)

I will kindle my fire this morning
In the presence of the holy angels of heaven.
Without malice, without jealousy, without envy,
Without fear, without terror of anyone under the sun,
But the Holy Son of God to shield me.
God, kindle Thou in my heart within
A flame of love to my neighbour,
To my foe, to my friend, to my kindred all,
To the brave, to the knave, to the thrall,
O Son of the loveliest Mary,
From the lowliest thing that loveth,
To the Name that is highest of all.
(Alexander Carmichael, ed., Carmina Gadelica)

I saw a stranger yestreen;
I put food in the eating place,
Drink in the drinking place,
Music in the listening place;
And, in the sacred Name of the Triune,
He blessed myself and my house,
My cattle and my dear ones.
And the lark said in her song,
Often, often, often,
Goes the Christ in the stranger’s guise:
Often, often, often,
Goes the Christ in the stranger’s guise.
(Source Unknown)



The above three Celtic quotes spoke to my heart the other day. I think they are edifying as prayer and reflections for St. Patrick’s Day. The middle quote is a “Blessing of the Kindling,” prayed by the woman of a household as she “lifted” the fire in the morning. It’s on the cover of our March 17 Order of Service.

Speaking of March 17 at St. Paul’s, we’re having a special St. Patrick’s Day theme in our March 17 Services. We’ll have St. Patrick’s and other Celtic prayers, Irish hymns, and a sermon by Fr. Cyril O’Haynes. Green will also be the colour of Jacob’s Ladder in our Children’s Talk; and everyone is invited to wear green clothing. Painting your face green is optional.


Last year’s St. Patrick’s Day postings can be accessed by clicking on the links below:

“A Celtic Blessing”;
“A Prayer of St. Patrick”;
“St. Patrick’s Breastplate”; and
“A Traditional Gaelic Blessing”.

Embedded below is the video of “May It be,” sung by a Celtic person, Enya. The words of the song are my prayer for us all this St. Patrick’s Day.

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