Saturday 10 November 2012

A Prayer to Saint Colum Cille for Emigrants

M.F. Cusack, An Illustrated History of Ireland (1868)

A common motif in the story of Saint Colum Cille was the pain that he endured for the sake of Christ in being exiled from his native land. As an illustration of the link in the Irish mind between Saint Colum Cille and the sorrow of living in exile, here is a short prayer from the classic collection Prayers of an Irish Mother. Prayers for emigrants were a staple of Irish prayer books in the nineteenth and in the first half of the twentieth century. Alas, the current economic crisis has brought forced emigration once again to the people of Ireland, although in these days of air travel and the worldwide web, the parting does not have to be quite so final as it once was.

For Our Loved Ones far away

St. Colmcille, who suffered the pain and grief of exile, watch over the children of Ireland, scattered throughout the world. Obtain for them solace and courage, and keep them true to God in every trial and temptation!

Prayers of an Irish Mother compiled by Mary T. Dolan (Dublin, 1934), 50.

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