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518117 December

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  • ambrois@xtra.co.nz
    Dec 16, 2013
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      Celtic and Old English Saints 17 December

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      * St. Brioch of Brittany
      * St. Judicael of Brittany
      * St. Tetta of Wimborne
      * St. Tydecho of Merionethshire
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      St. Brieg, Abbot and Founder of Quingamp, Brittany
      -----------------------------------------------------

      St Brieuc (Brioch, Briach, Sant Brieg in Breton), born in British
      Cornwall, he came to Paris where he was ordained priest by St Germanus
      (not St Germanus of Auxerre) in the year 549. The year after, he
      returned back to his country, converted his father, built churches and
      monasteries, erected Crosses and worked miracles.

      On the day of Pentecost of 565 an angel ordained him to cross over the
      sea to preach the Holy Gospel to Brittany. He obeyed and landed near the
      mouth of river Jaudy and founded a monastery which later grew into the
      city of Treguier.

      Later he left with 84 monks , journeyed eastward and founded a new
      monastery on the location of the actual town of St Brieuc .He was
      elected bishop (date not mentioned), died aged 90 in 614, and many
      miracles occurred then.

      His relics were translated to the abbey of St Sergius and St Bacchus by
      King Heruspee, son of Nominoe to protect them from the Norse invaders.
      In 1210 , an arm, two ribs and pieces of the saint's skull were
      restituted by the monks to the bishop of St Brieuc.

      Troparion of St Briach tone 8
      O holy Briach, thou dost teach us the value of renunciation, for thou
      didst renounce the world to seek salvation./ Therefore we pray, that our
      lives may show forth the virtue of self denial and thereby attain the
      eternal salvation of our souls.


      St. Judicael, King
      -----------------------------------------------------------
      Died 698. Saint Eligius (f.d. December 1) reconciled King Saint Judicael
      of Brittany with Dagobert in Clichy, ending the Breton's harassment of
      the Franks. Judicael is venerated by the Bretons as a national hero and
      a holy man. He preferred the bread of Dadon (Saint Owen; f.d. August 24)
      to that of a king, so in his old age he retired to the monastery of Gael
      near Vannes (Attwater 2, Encyclopaedia).


      St. Tetta
      -----------------------------------------------------------
      8th century. Abbess Saint Tetta of Wimborne, England, prepared many
      religious, who answered the call of Saint Boniface (f.d. June 5) for
      helpers in the mission field (Encyclopaedia).


      St. Tydecho of Merionethshire, Wales, Brother of Saint Cadfan
      -----------------------------------------------------------

      Troparion of St Tydecho tone 8
      By thy labours for Christ, O Father Tydecho, thou didst win the crown of
      eternal glory/ and didst light the way into the Ark of Salvation./
      Wherefore, O Saint, intercede for us that in following thee we may be
      found worthy of Christ's great mercy.


      St. Crunnmael, Abbot of Iona
      -----------------------------------------------------------
      The Martyrology of Oengus has a beautiful entry for today, December 17 on
      the Church calendar:

      17. May Victor's host protect us
      after the triumph of a deed of valour,
      that we may attain splendid bliss
      Jesus, Mary's great Son.

      The scholiast's notes, however, point to a number of other saints who may
      also claim to be commemorated on this day:

      17. Victor, i.e. a martyr; and Senchaid of Hui Aeda in Bregia, Lazarus and
      Moliac, and Crunnmael (abbot) of Iona, and Maedoc son of Mursan here.

      The Martyrology of Gorman reads a little differently:

      The noble translation of Ignatius : Lazarus and Martha, gentle ones,
      chaste relatives of Christ : Senchad along with them, my Liacc. Crundmael
      the vigorous whom I mention, my beautiful Aedoc whom thou entreatest.
      whilst the latest of the Martyrologies, that of Donegal omits the mention of
      Lazarus in favour of a quartet of Irish saints:


      17. A. SEXTO DECIMO KAL. JANUARII. 17.
      CRUNNMAEL, Abbot of Ia Coluim-cille.
      MAEDHOG, son of Mursan.
      SENCHADH.
      MOLIAG.
      I found it interesting that the Martyrology of Gorman had identified Lazarus
      as the biblical Lazarus of Bethany, the man whom Christ raised from the dead
      after four days in the tomb. This event is commemorated in the Orthodox
      Church on 'Lazarus Saturday', which is celebrated on the day before Palm
      Sunday. I tried to find out if Saint Lazarus has another feastday in his own
      right and wasn't surprised to see Wikipedia claim that:


      No celebration of Saint Lazarus is included on the General Roman Calendar,
      but his memorial is traditionally celebrated on December 17.
      I haven't been able to find out any more about the other Irish saints
      mentioned on this day, but the succession of the abbots of Iona is mentioned
      in the sources. The succession at Iona, initially at least, tended to remain
      within the wider family of Saint Columba. It has been estimated that of the
      first thirteen successors of Saint Columba, at least ten were related to the
      family of the founder. Our saint is listed as the tenth abbot of Iona,
      immediately succeeding Saint Adamnan, Saint Columba's most famous
      biographer. In an appendix to his 1874 edition of Adamnan's Life of Columba,
      Irish Anglican Bishop, William Reeves, quotes the Chronicle of Iona:

      X. CONAMHAIL, 704-710.
      707. Dunchadh principatum Iae tenuit.
      710. Conamail mac Failbhi, abbas Iae, pausat.

      If I am correct in assuming that this Conamhail is our saint, and his is the
      only name from the list of abbots which fits, then his abbacy would have
      taken place at the time when Iona was dealing with the debate on the Paschal
      Dating Controversy. Indeed, earlier scholars were puzzled by the fact that
      the annals appear to show that there was more than one person claiming to
      hold the abbacy of Iona at the same time. In this case Conamhail is listed
      for the period 704-710, yet in 707 his successor Dunchadh is listed as
      having already been abbot, and Dunchadh too shares his tenure with other
      abbots. Nineteenth-century scholars speculated that this may reflect some
      sort of 'schism' at Iona between those who favoured the Roman Easter dating
      versus those who did not. Alternatively, or additionally, the split may have
      concerned dynastic, familial rivalries between various branches of the wider
      family of Saint Columba and thus led to two different individuals both
      claiming to be abbot of Iona. Modern scholar Richard Sharpe, however, is not
      convinced that the evidence is there for any kind of schism, pointing out:


      If the situation here were one of different parties recognizing different
      abbots, it is hard to understand why the annals should enter all of them
      impartially and without explanation...Rather than conjecture a schism, we
      should admit that it is impossible to interpret how the abbacy was occupied
      during this period.
      Richard Sharpe, ed and trans, Life of Saint Columba, (Penguin Classics,
      1991), 75.

      Obviously this is one more area of the history of the Irish Church that
      would repay further study.


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