Saturday, 28 July 2018

Pilgrimage to Borris, County Carlow

Members and friends of the Catholic Heritage Association joined together this afternoon for a Pilgrimage to Borris, County Carlow, and a Traditional Latin Mass in the beautiful Church of the Sacred Heart, at the foot of Mount Leinster, in the valley of the River Barrow eight miles upstream from Graiguenamanagh and next to Borris House, seat of the McMorrough Kavanaghs, the ancient Gaelic Kings of Leinster.  The Mass celebrated was that of the day, the feast of Saints Nazarius and Celsus, Martyrs; Victor I, Pope and Martyr; and Innocent I, Pope and Confessor.

Reports of previous Traditional Latin Masses organised by the Association to Borris can be found here: 2012, 2013, 2014.

Unfortunately, Buildings of Ireland has only a short account of the Church here.

The Parish website can be found here and the link to the webcam of the Church can be found here.

Saturday, 21 July 2018

Traditional Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Strokestown

A warm welcome awaited us today in Strokestown, Co. Roscommon, the home place of the late Fr. Flanagan, our first Chaplain, today for a Traditional Latin Mass for the repose of his soul in the Parish Church of the Immaculate Conception, a towering beacon in stone standing guard over the town, on the feast of St. Lawrence of Brindisi.  Our grateful thanks to the Priests and People of Strokestown for their many kindnesses.

Buildings of Ireland has a full description of the Church here.
The online Dictionary of Irish Architects has a note of the Church here.
Reports of previous pilgrimages can be found here (2013) and here (2014)

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Latin Mass in Strokestown, Co. Roscommon

We are returning to Strokestown, Co. Roscommon, on Saturday, 21st July, 2018, for a visit to the graveyard followed by a Traditional Latin Mass in the Parish Church of the Immaculate Conception at 2 p.m.

Latin Mass in Ballyhea - Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

The next Traditional Latin Mass in St. Mary's Church, Ballyhea, Co. Cork, will be on the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, 16th July, at 12 noon.

Come and pray with us!

Monday, 2 July 2018

Pilgrimage to Kilcock, County Kildare

Members and friends of the Catholic Heritage Association joined together last Saturday for a Traditional Latin Mass for the repose of the soul of one of our founder members.

Reports of previous Traditional Latin Masses organised by the Association in Kilcock can be found here: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2017.

The Patroness of the Parish is St. Coca. You can find out more about her here.

St. Ninian of Scotland began his career in Cloncurry, also in the Parish. You can find out about his connection with Kilcock here.

Buildings of Ireland gives a detailed description of the Church of St. Coca here.

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Killeigh (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter l, at p. 512:

Killeigh in the barony of Geashill. St. Sinchell founded this monastery for canons of St. Augustine. See Clane Co Kildare.

AD 849 died Reaghtawry abbot of Killeigh

June 28th eighteenth of Elizabeth this monastery with three messuages one hundred and twenty four acres of arable land twenty four of pasture three of meadow and four of underwood and three messuages six cottages twenty acres of arable land and seven of pasture in the town of Donfeigh in the county with the tithes were granted for ever in capite to John Lee at the yearly rent of 45s 6d.

May 16th 1578 this abbey with all its temporal possessions was granted to Gerald, Earl of Kildare, and his heirs at the yearly rent of 33s 4d with an obligation of maintaining one able horseman.

A nunnery for canonesses of St. Augustine existed here. Its erection is attributed to the Warrens but before the English settled in Ireland. This establishment was in existence. They may have repaired it Gray Friary. This house was erected in the reign of King Edward I by an O Connor as some suppose.

AD 1303 Donald O Bruin guardian of this monastery was made bishop of Clonmacnoise.

At the general suppression this abbey was granted to John Alee. Killeigh was formerly a place of note and its religious houses were amply endowed particularly the monastery of the canons regular.

Monday, 25 June 2018

First Pilgrimage to Tullamore

It would a joyful privilege for members and friends of the Catholic Heritage Association to be joined by so many people from Tullamore and the surrounding Parishes for our first pilgrimage to the Church of the Assumption, Tullamore, Co. Offaly, last Saturday.

The Parish website gives an excellent history of the Catholic Heritage of Tullamore, on the occasion of the recent centenary of the Church, here, with a survey of the Church building here.  Buildings of Ireland, as ever, has a thorough appraisal of the Church itself here.  Archiseek has another excellent piece here.

Our good friends at Tullamore Parish have posted some photos of the Mass on their excellent Parish website here. Mary with her loving Son, bless us each and every one!

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Kilcock, Co. Kildare

We are returning to St. Coca's Church, Kilcock, Co. Kildare, on Saturday, 30th June, for a Traditional Latin Mass at 12 noon.

Come and Pray!

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Latin Mass in Ballyhea - Feast of Saints Peter and Paul

The next Mass in St. Mary's Church, Ballyhea, Co. Cork, will be on the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, 29th June, at 12 noon.

Come and pray with us!

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Our Gaelic Christian Heritage (Part 5)

Among the stirring lines that affirm the high endeavour of the Gaelic Race in the cause of Christ, few can equal for sheer force and colour, some anonymous lines urging fidelity to the True Church against the wiles of heresy. Qui legit intellegat!

Ní trácht ar an Ministir Ghollda,
Ná a chreideamh gan bunús gan bhrí,
Mar 'sé ba bhunchloch dá Theampall,
Magairlí Anraoí an Ríogh!

File gan anim

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Pilgrimage to Duiske Abbey 2018

Along the waters of the mighty River Barrow that forms the backbone of the Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin - and whose waters have witnessed many of our pilgrimages in the past - we returned again to beautiful Graiguenamanagh and to the ancient and new Duiske Abbey for a Traditional Latin Mass of Our Lady on Saturday. Reports of previous pilgrimages are to be found here and here, here and here. It was also our second pilgrimage in just over a month to one of the few of Ireland's medieval Abby Churches restored to the Worship of God. The other being Holy Cross Abbey, Co. Tipperary.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Abbeyleix (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter lviii, at p. 615:

Abbey Leix on the river Nore and in the barony of Cullinagh. This abbey was founded in honor of the Virgin Mary

AD 1183 by Corcheger O More. The monks were brought thither from the Cistercian abbey of Baltinglass.
AD 1421 the 7th of May a great slaughter was made near this abbey by O More of the retinue of Lord Ormond then lord lieutenant of Ireland Twenty seven of the English were cut off the chief of whom were Purcell and Grant.  Ten persons of superior rank were made prisoners and two hundred others were saved by flying to this monastery. No counties in Ireland were more dearly purchased by the English adventurers than the King's and Queen's .The O Moores were engaged more than sixty years in deadly conflict with the invaders.

The lands of this abbey, 1227, acres were granted by lease for thirty seven years to Thomas, Earl of Ormond at the yearly rent of 6 16s 8d and afterwards at their reversion at an increased rent of 10 5s. The family of Ormond have profited much by their fidelity to the English government. The Duke of Ormond, so celebrated in the Irish annals of the seventeenth century, obtained enormous grants of lands tithes and impropriations. The book of the exiled Nicholas French, Bishop of Ferns, called the Unkind Deserter, has unmasked the cause of the Duke's treachery to the cause of his king and country. This tract is at present extremely rare as the family of the Duke, in order to keep to themselves the secrets which it divulged, purchased at any price wherever they could find it such an obnoxious piece of evidence. Similar has been the prudence of English parsons in buying up from Catholic booksellers Cobbett's History of the Reformation. A trace of the abbey of Leix is not to be found. It seems that its ruins were as cutting as the Unkind Deserter.

Friday, 1 June 2018

Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Tullamore

For the first time, the Catholic Heritage Association will be making a pilgrimage to historic Tullamore, Co. Offaly, on Saturday, 23rd June, with a Traditional Latin Mass celebrated in the Parish Church of the Assumption at 2.30 p.m.

Come and pray!

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Our Gaelic Christian Heritage (Part 4)

As the Penal Laws took hold through the 18th Century, it was State policy to ensure that the resources of a persecuted Catholic People dwindled. In the Lament for Kilcash, the death of Lady Margaret Butler of Kilcash, and with her, a source of benevolent patronage for Catholics.

The central theme is contained in the lines "bhíodh iarlaí ag tarraingt tar toinn ann, is an t-aifreann binn á rá." Nobles made their way o'er the waves thence, and there the sweet Mass was said. The poem is variously attributed.

Caoine Cill Cháis

Cad a dhéanfaimid feasta gan adhmad?
Tá deireadh na gcoillte ar lár;
níl trácht ar Chill Cháis ná ar a teaghlach
ní bainfear a cloig go bráth.
An áit úd a gcónaiodh an deighbhean
fuair gradam is meidhir thar mhná,
bhíodh iarlaí ag tarraingt tar toinn ann
is an t-aifreann binn á rá.

Ní chluinim fuiaim lachan ná gé ann,
ná fiolar ag éamh sois cuain,
ná fiú na mbeacha chun saothair
thabharfadh mil agus céir don tslua.
Níl ceol binn milis na n-éan ann
le hamharc an lae a dhul uainn,
ná an chuaichín i mbarra na ngéag ann,
ós í chuirfeadh an saol chun suain.

Tá ceo ag titim ar chraobha ann
ná glanann le gréin ná lá,
tá 'smúid ag titim ón spéir ann
is a cuid uisce g léir ag trá.
Níl coll, níl cuileann, níl caor ann,
ach clocha is maolchlocháin,
páirc an chomhair gan chraobh ann
is d' imigh an géim chun fáin.

Anois mar bharr ar gach míghreanní,
chuaigh prionsa na nGael thar sáil
anonn le hainnir na míne
fuair gradam sa bhFrainc is sa Spáinn.
Anois tá a cuallacht á caoineadh,
gheibbeadh airgead buí agus bán;
's í ná tógladh sillbh na ndaoine,
ach cara na bhfíorbhochtán.

Aicim ar Mhuire is ar Íosa
go dtaga sí arís chughainn slán,
go mbeidh rincí fada ag gabháil timpeall,
ceol veidhlín is tinte cnámh;
go dtógtar an baile seo ár sinsear
Cill Chais bhreá arís go hard,
's go bráth nó go dtiocfaidh
an dílená feictear é arís ar lár.

Or in an English version:

Now what will we do for timber,
With the last of the woods laid low?
There's no talk of Cill Chais or its household
And its bell will be struck no more.
That dwelling where lived the good lady
Most honoured and joyous of women
earls made their way over wave there
And the sweet Mass once was said.

Ducks' voices nor geese do I hear there,
Nor the eagle's cry over the bay,
Nor even the bees at their labour
Bringing honey and wax to us all.
No birdsong there, sweet and delightful,
As we watch the sun go down,
Nor cuckoo on top of the branches
Settling the world to rest.

A mist on the boughs is descending
Neither daylight nor sun can clear.
A stain from the sky is descending
And the waters receding away.
No hazel nor holly nor berry
But boulders and bare stone heaps,
Not a branch in our neighbourly haggard,
and the game all scattered and gone.

Then a climax to all of our misery:
the prince of the Gael is abroad
oversea with that maiden of mildness
who found honour in France and Spain.
Her company now must lament her,
who would give yellow money and white
she who'd never take land from the people
but was friend to the truly poor.

I call upon Mary and Jesus
to send her safe home again:
dances we'll have in long circles
and bone-fires and violin music;
that Cill Chais, the townland of our fathers,
will rise handsome on high once more
and till doom - or the Deluge returns -
we'll see it no more laid low.

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Pilgrimage to Loughrea, County Galway

Members and friends of the Catholic Heritage Association returned in pilgrimage to Saint Brendan's Cathedral, Loughrea, the jewel of the Celtic Arts and Crafts revival. A report of the 2017 pilgrimage can be found here. The Mass was offered for the unborn as it was the morning of the vote count for the Referendum on the 8th Amendment to the Irish Constitution.

The Cathedral's website can be found here.

The Buildings of Ireland survey with additional images of the architectural detail can be found here

Roaringwater Journal gives a really good detailed view of the art of the Cathedral here.

The Dictionary of Irish Architects gives details of the works of the Cathedral here.

Aidan McRae Thompson's excellent flickr album of the Cathedral can be accessed here.

Wikipedia has a short account of the Cathedral here.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Duiske Abbey

Once again, the Catholic Heritage Association is organising a Pilgrimage to ancient Duiske Abbey, Graiguenamanagh, Co. Kilkenny, on the shores of the beautiful River Barrow.

Traditional Latin Mass at 2 p.m. on Saturday, 16th June.

Come and Pray!

Sunday, 6 May 2018

Pilgrimage to Holy Cross Abbey 2018

To make a pilgrimage to Holy Cross Abbey, Holycross, Co. Tipperary, is to walk the path to Calvary and to walk in the footsteps of almost nine centuries of pilgrims. The Abbey was once home to the monks of the great Cistercian Order.

The Atlas and Cyclopedia of Ireland (1900) says of it: "This monastic ruin is considered to rank in popular esteem as one of the first, if not the very first, in Ireland. It is situated on the western bank of the Suir about seven miles north of Cashel. It was founded in 1182 by Donald O'Brien, king of Limerick, for the Cistercian monks; but is said to owe its origin and name to the possession of piece of the True Cross, presented in 1110 by Pope Pascal II to Murrough O'Brien, monarch of Ireland... The Abbey is appropriately built in the form of a cross, with nave, chancel and transept, and a lofty, square belfrey at the intersection of the cross. In both transepts are two distinct chapels beautifully groined. It was endowed with special privileges, and the abbot was a peer of parliament with the title of Earl of the Holy Cross."

Further details can be found on PilgrimageMedievalIreland including that: "in 1567 the Lord deputy complaining to the Queen wrote ‘there is no small conflunence of people still resorting to the holy cross’. In 1579 James Fitzmaurice Fitzgerald is said to have venerated the relic of the cross at the abbey a few weeks before his death at the hands of the Burkes, while 1583 Dermot O’Hurley archbishop of Cashel made a pilgrimage to the shrine shortly before his capture by the English. The relic of the cross would have attracted people from all classes and in 1586 Camden writes of the ‘famous abbey’ to which the people still come to do reverence to the relic of the Holy Cross’. He goes on to say ‘It is incredible what a concourse of people still throng hither out of devotion. For this nation obstinately adheres to the religion of superstition of their forefathers.’"

Good old Wikipedia adds a poignant detail: "The Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland recount that in 1601, Prince Hugh Roe O'Donnell, on his way to the Battle of Kinsale, true to his family arms and Constantinian motto (In Hoc Signo Vinces) and in anticipation of the battle to come at Kinsale, visited and venerated a relic of the True Cross (Holy rood) on the Feast of St. Andrew, on November 30, 1601 at Holy Cross Abbey. At that period it was a rallying point for the defence of religious freedom and for Irish sovereignty. From there he sent an expedition to Ardfert, to win a quick victory and successfully recover the territory of his ally, Fitzmaurice, Lord of Kerry, who had lost it and his 9-year-old son, to Sir Charles Wilmot. It was the last victory before the defeat at Kinsale."

Archiseek has, as ever, some excellent images of the abbey and add that "it became a scheduled national monument in 1880, 'to be preserved and not used as a place of worship'" However, a special Holycross Act was passed by the Irish Parliament, the Oireachtas, to allow the Church to be restored to its intended use and as the old song has it: "is an t-aifreann binn á rá" (and the sweet Mass was said there once more).

Our third pilgrimage in the Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly in recent months and following also in the footsteps of 'Ecclesia Dei - Ireland' that had held aloft the banner of the Traditional Latin Mass for so many years, we returned on the 5th May, the traditional time close to the old Feast of the Holy Cross on 3rd May, for the 26th Annual Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Holy Cross Abbey. Faugh a Ballagh!

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Sletty (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter lviii, at p. 620:

Sletty in the barony of Sleevemarge The see of St Fiech the disciple and favorite of St Patrick and to whom the apostle presented many valuable gifts St Aidus bishop of Sletty who died in 699 and whose name occurs in the Irish calendars at the 7th of February and to whom a life of St Patrick was addressed by a writer called Macuthenus was one of the fathers who composed the synod of Flann Febhla primate of Armagh and of St Adamnan abbot of Hy Seven disciples of St Fiech rest in Sletty Moehatoc Augustin Tegan Dermot Nennid Paul a hermit and Fedhlim

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

80th Grand Master of the Order of Malta

It has been announced from the Grand Magistry of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta, known as the Order of Malta, that Fra’ Giacomo Dalla Torre del Tempio di Sanguinetto has been elected 80th Grand Master of the Order today. The newly elected Grand Master will swear his oath before the Pope’s Special Delegate to the Sovereign Order of Malta, Archbishop Angelo Becciu, and the members of the Council Complete of State tomorrow morning in the Church of Santa Maria in Aventino. Long live the Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta!

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

Our Gaelic Christian Heritage (Part 3)

The figure of High King Brian Boru stands astride the history of Gaelic Ireland like a colossus. Although not of the Uí Neill dynasty that had ruled Ireland since Niall Noígiallach (Niall of the Nine Hostages) in the 5th Century, Boru showed himself to be the strongest and most fit for the throne. It is a testimony to the cultural stability of Gaelic Ireland that Máel Sechnaill II, who had abdicated the High Kingship in his favour, was also his successor when his line was extinguished at the Battle of Clontarf on Good Friday, 23rd April, 1014.

Perhaps the greatest 'what if' in Irish history is 'what if Brian Boru had survived the Battle of Clontarf'. It is conceivable that Ireland could have taken a great leap forward towards unity or feudalism at a moment when Robert the Pious struggled to maintain his throne, even against his own sons, and when St. Henry II found it difficult to gain recognition for his claim to the Imperial throne. At the time, Spain was struggling for survival against the Moors and Richard, Duke of Normandy, grandfather of William the Bastard, was withstanding a revolt of peasants. An Ireland united culturally and spiritually under the leadership of a powerful and dynamic dynasty would surely have been a very different one from the one seen from Bannow Bay in 1169.

While a good deal of romanticism surrounds our perceptions of Boru and Clontarf - and over-simplification of issues - it should be noted that Gaelic Ireland avoided the fate of England, which received Canute as King the following year. It was another class of Viking, the Normans of Wales, who descended a century later to begin the most sorrowful chapters of Irish history.

The following is a poetical account by William Kennealy of the address of King Brian, holding aloft the Crucifix, to his troops before the Battle of Clontarf:

"Stand ye now for Erin's glory! Stand ye now for Erin's cause!
Long ye've groaned beneath the rigor of the Northmen's savage laws.
What though brothers league against us? What, though myriad be the foe?
Victory will be more honored in the myriads' overthrow.

"Proud Connacians! oft we've wrangled in our petty feuds of yore;
Now we fight against the robber Dane upon our native shore;
May our hearts unite in friendship, as our blood in one red tide,
While we crush their mail-clad legions, and annihilate their pride!

"Brave Eugenians! Erin triumphs in the sight she sees to-day-
Desmond's homesteads all deserted for the muster and the fray!
Cluan's vale and Galtees' summit send their bravest and their best-
May such hearts be theirs forever, for the Freedom of the West!

"Chiefs and Kernes of Dalcassia! Brothers of my past career,
Oft we've trodden on the pirate-flag that flaunts before us here;
You remember Inniscattery, how we bounded on the foe,
As the torrent of the mountain bursts upon the plain below!

"They have razed our proudest castles , spoiled the Temples of the Lord,
Burned to dust the sacred relics, put the Peaceful to the sword,
Desecrated all things holy, as they soon may do again;
If their power to-day we smite not, if to-day we be not men!

"On this day the God-man suffered - look upon the sacred sign;
May we conquer 'neath its shadow, as of old did Constantine!
May the heathen tribe of Odin fade before it like a dream,
And the triumph of this glorious day in our future annuals gleam!

"God of heaven, bless our banner, nerve our sinews for the strife!
Fight we now for all that's holy, for our altars, land and life,
For red vengeance on the spoiler, whom the blazing temples trace,
For the honor of our maidens and the glory of our race!

"Should I fall before the foeman, 'tis the death I seek to-day;
Should ten thousand daggers pierce me, bear my body not away,
Till this day of days be over, till the field is fought and won;
Then the holy Mass be chanted, and the funeral rites be done.

"Men of Erin! men of Erin! grasp the battle-ax: and spear!
Chase these Northern wolves before you like a herd of frightened deer!
Burst their ranks, like bolts from heaven! Down, on the heathen crew,
For the glory of the Crucified, and Erin's glory too!"

Monday, 30 April 2018

Our Gaelic Christian Heritage (Part 2)

Grandson of High King Conn Cétchathach (Conn of the Hundred Battles), Cormac Mac Airt came to the High Kingship about the year AD 116 and is the most glorious of the High Kings of Tara. The works of learning, wisdom and jurisprudence attributed to him, the Psalter of Tara, the Seanchas Mór (at least in original form), and the Teagasc na Ríogh attest to cultural greatness of his reign, apart from the "fruit and fatness" of the land in his time.

Of greatest interest to us is that King Cormac was reputed to have rejected the superstitions of the Druids, refusing to worship the carvings, saying that the carver deserved greater worship still. His reign was brought to an end by a grave disfiguring injury - since such disfigurements excluded the sufferer from exercising Sovereignty among the ancient Irish. He lived for some time thereafter but, his final wish was to be buried, not at the pagan burying-place of Brugh na Bóinne, but at Ross na Ríogh. His wishes were disregarded but Providence intervened to fulfill them. Sir Samuel Ferguson's poem 'The Burial of King Cormac' relates the story thus:

"Crom Cruach and his sub-gods twelve,"
Said Cormac, "are but craven treene:
The axe that made them, haft and helve,
Had worthier of our worship been.

But He who made the tree to grow,
And hid in earth the iron stone,
And made the man with mind to know
The axe's use, is God alone."

Anon to priests of Crom was brought
(Where girded in their service dread
They ministered on red Moy Slaught)
Word of the words King Cormac said.

They loosed their curse against the king,
They cursed him in his flesh and bones
And daily in their mystic ring
They turned the maledictive stones.

Till, where at meat the monarch sate
Amid the revel and the wine,
He choked upon the food he ate
At Sletty, southward of the Boyne.

High vaunted then the priestly throng,
And far and wide they noised abroad
With trump and loud liturgic song
The praise of their avenging god.

But ere the voice was wholly spent
That priest and prince should still obey,
To awed attendants o'er him bent
Great Cormac gathered breath to say:

"Spread not the beds of Brugh for me,
When restless death-bed's use is done;
But bury me at Ross-na-ree,
And face me to the rising sun.

"For all the kings that lie in Brugh
Put trust in gods of wood and stone;
And 'twas at Ross that I first knew
One, Unseen, who is God alone.

"His glory lightens from the east,
His message soon shall reach our shore,
And idol-god and cursing priest
Shall plague us from Moy Slaught no more."

Dead Cormac on his bier they laid:
"He reigned a king for forty years;
And shame it were," his captains said,
"He lay not with his royal peers:

"His grandsire, Hundred Battles, sleeps
Serene in Brugh, and all around
Dead kings, in stone sepulchral keeps,
Protect the sacred burial ground.

"What though a dying man should rave
Of changes o'er the eastern sea,
In Brugh of Boyne shall be his grave,
And not in noteless Rossnaree."

Then northward forth they bore the bier,
And down from Sleithac's side they drew
With horseman and with charioteer,
To cross the fords of Boyne to Brugh."

There came a breath of finer air
That touched the Boyne with ruffling wings,
It stirred him in his sedgy lair
And in his mossy moorland springs.

And as the burial train came down
With dirge, and savage dolorous shows,
Across their pathway broad and brown,
The deep full-hearted river rose.

From bank to bank through all his fords,
'Neath blackening squalls he swelled and boiled,
And thrice the wond'ring gentile lords
Essay'd to cross, and thrice recoil'd.

Then forth stepped gray-haired warriors four;
They said: "Through angrier floods than these,
On link'd shield once our King we bore
From Dread-spear and the hosts of Deece;

"And long as loyal will holds good,
And limbs respond with helpful thews,
Nor flood nor fiend within the flood
Shall bar him of his burial dues."

With slanted necks they stooped to lift;
They heaved him up to neck and chin;
And, pair by pair, with footsteps swift,
Locked arm and shoulder, bore him in.

'Twas brave to see them leave the shore;
To mark the deepening surges rise,
And fall subdued in foam before
The tension of their striding thighs.

'Twas brave, when now a spear-cast out,
Breast-high the battling surges ran;
For eweight was great, and limbs were stout,
And loyal man put trust in man.

But ere they reached the middle deep,
Nor steadying weight of clay they bore,
Nor strain of sinewy limbs could keep
Their feet beneath the swerving four.

And now they slide and now they swim,
And now amid the blackening squall,
Gray locks afloat with clutchings grim,
They plunge around the floating pall.

While as a youth with practiced spear
Through justling crowds bears off the ring-
Boyne from their shoulders caught the bier,
And proudly bare away the King!"

At morning on the grassy marge
Of Ross-na-ree the corpse was found,
And shepherds at their early charge,
Entombed it in the peaceful ground.

A tranquil spot : a hopeful sound
Comes from the ever-youthful stream,
And still on daisied mead and mound
The dawn delays with tenderer beam.

Round Cormac, Spring renews her buds;
In march perpetual by his side,
Down come the earth-fresh April floods,
And up the sea-fresh salmon glide;

And life and time rejoicing run
From age to age their wonted way;
But still he waits the risen Sun,
For still 'tis only dawning Day.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Bansha 2018

We were blessed to return for a third time to Bansha, Co. Tipperary, to pray at the grave of the mighty Canon Hayes and to visit Athassel Abbey, one of the largest ecclesiastical sites in the Country.  The sun always seems to shine in Bansha!  The welcome is always warm too.

Buildings of Ireland has a fine description of the architecture of the Church of the Annunciation.

Fittingly for the Church of the Annunciation, the Mass was held in the shadow - and offered for the intention - of the Referendum on the Protection of Unborn Life.

Nearby Golden was the birthplace of the outstanding Fr. Matthew, OFMCap, the Apostle of Temperance.  There must be something powerful in the water thereabouts.  Golden is dotted with medieval ruins and is well worth a visit by itself.  However, our target was between Golden and Bansha, the great Abbey or Priory of Athassel.

IrelandinRuins gives a snapshot of a visit there. The abbey was built for the Augustinians by William Fitz-Aldhelm de Burgho in the 12th century. Dedicated to St. Edmund, it was one of Ireland’s most extensive monasteries, covering about 4 acres of land along the banks of the River Suir.