Thursday, June 3, 2010

St. Kevin of Glendalough (498 to June 3, 618)

"And then there was St Kevin and the blackbird.
The saint is kneeling, arms stretched out, inside
His cell, but the cell is narrow, so

One turned-up palm is out the window, stiff
As a crossbeam, when a blackbird lands
and Lays in it and settles down to nest." (Seamus Heaney)

St. Francis of Assisi is known for his communication with animals, love of nature, and using a rock as a pillow, but more than 700 years earlier, there lived a saint with the same attributes.
St. Kevin (Coemgen) of Glendalough was born in Ireland in 498 and lived as a hermit at Disert-Coemgen. Legend says an angel brought him to the spot where his bed was a doleman.
He was the founder of Glendalough and its first abbot. Although St. Kevin of Glendalough spoke to all creatures and they understood him, he is most often depicted with a blackbird or crow.
He died on June 3, 618 and is the patron saint of Dublin and crows. St. Kevin of Glendalough's feast day is June 3.

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