Monday, March 17, 2014

Praying with Saint Patrick

My day started out with the most delightful email from my mother, Nancy Ann Gilmore Hill:
Don't forget that you're Irish! Gilmore is an Irish name.  William Gilmore came from Dublin, Ireland, married Rebecca and built a house on the 200+ acres on Morton Hill. They had three children: Mary Anna, Mehitable, and (John) Joseph. Joseph [March 2, 1886 - May 28, 1948] was my father's father. 
In my Perspectives course, I was wonderfully surprised by the powerful work of Irish Christians. I will quote a couple of phrases from early church history:
"the Irish volcano...poured forth a passionate fire of evangelism for three centuries...across England and onto the continent."
[The Irish] "contributed more to the evangelization of western Europe, even central Europe, than any other force."
I'm thankful for my heritage, and I want to pray for the beautiful country of Ireland!
Love, Mom
It seems our Irish heritage came from a Protestant family, but from the first moment I knew him I was drawn toward Brian Murphy, he of Irish Catholic descent.  We've only recently begun to learn about the man Patrick and celebrate him a bit more intentionally.

Upon our eldest son's 21st birthday we added to his name:  Andrew Brian Murphy became Andrew Brian Patrick Murphy.  (someday I'll write more about that celebration)

I'm thankful, too,  for our worship leader at Christ Church (and his team) for bravely leading us in the somewhat tricky melody of Saint Patrick's Breastplate.  These words are powerful, a firm reminder of our identity and place in Christ.  

The hymn of Saint Patrick's Breastplate (a prayer that shields)

1 I bind unto myself today
The strong name of the Trinity
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One, and One in Three.

2 I bind this day to me forever
By pow'r of faith, Christ's incarnation,
His Baptism in the Jordan river,
His cross of death for my salvation,

His bursting from the spicèd tomb,

His riding up the heavenly way,

His coming at the day of doom
I bind unto myself today.
3 I bind unto myself today
The pow'r of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, His might to say,
His ear to harken to my need,

The wisdom of my God to teach,

His hand to guide, His shield to ward,

The Word of God to give me speech,
His heav'nly host to be my guard.
4 Against the demon snares of sin,
The vice that gives temptation force,
The natural lusts that war within,
The hostile foes that mar my course;

Or few or many, far or nigh,

In ev'ry place and in all hours,

Against their fierce hostility,
I bind to me those holy pow'rs.

5 I bind unto myself the name,
The strong name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One, and One in Three,

Of whom all nature hath creation,

Eternal Father, Spirit, Word.

Praise to the Lord of my salvation;
Salvation is of Christ the Lord!

The Book of Kells

                                              Source: via Tamara on Pinterest

For those of us unable to visit in person, the Book of Kells is now available to view online.  
via Trinity College Library Dublin: "The Book of Kells transparencies, originally captured by Faksimile Verlag, Lucerne, Switzerland in 1990, have recently been rescanned using state of the art imaging technology. These new digital images offer the most accurate high resolution images to date, providing an experience second only to viewing the book in person.

Secret of Kells

The gorgeously-rendered mythology behind the very real, magnificent Book of Kells, created by Irish monks to turn the medieval darkness into light

 Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful....

Available on Amazon instant stream (free for Prime members!)

See Steven D. Greydanus' review at Christianity Today, here.

Éirinn go Brách!!
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