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24 January

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  • ambrois@xtra.co.nz
    Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= * St. Guasacht of Granard * St. Manach of Lemonaghan * St.
    Message 1 of 15 , Jan 23, 2013
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      Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January

      =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
      * St. Guasacht of Granard
      * St. Manach of Lemonaghan
      * St. Cadoc of Wales
      =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=


      St. Guasacht of Granard,
      Bishop in Ireland, Son of Saint Patrick's former master
      ----------------------------------------------------
      4th century. Guasacht was the son of Maelchu (Miluic), the master under
      whom Saint Patrick worked as a slave in Ireland. Maelchu set fire to his
      home, locked the doors, and perished in the flames rather than meet
      Patrick again. Guasacht, however, was converted by Patrick, whom he
      helped in the evangelization of Ireland, both as a layman and later as
      bishop of Granard (County Longford). His two sisters, known as the Emers
      (f.d. December 11), also became Christians and lived as monastics
      (Benedictines, D'Arcy, Montague).


      St. Manach of Lemonaghan
      ---------------------------------------
      St. Manchan lived in Leamonaghan, it is about two kilometres from
      Pollagh. St. Kieran of Clonmacnoise gave him some land and he formed a
      monastery in the year 645 AD. Nothing now remains but the ruins and the
      surrounding graveyard. The foundations of the original buildings may still
      be traced but the larger ruins are those of a church built at a later date.

      About 500m from the monastery is a little stone house which Monchan built
      for his mother Mella. This place is known locally as Kell and the ruins of
      the house can still be visited today. It is said that one day the saint was
      thirsty and there was no water at the monastery. He struck a rock and a
      spring well bubbled up, it is now known as St. Manahan's well. It is visited
      by people from all around especially on January 24 each year. It is claimed
      that many people have been cured of diseases after visiting the well.

      There are many stories about the saint. One of the most famous of them
      explains why the people of Lemonaghan will not sell milk. St. Manchan had a
      cow that used to give milk to the whole country side for which there was no
      charge. The cow became famous and the neighbouring people of Kill-Managhan
      got jealous and stole his cow. When St. Manchan eventually found his cow it
      was dead, he struck it with a stick and the cow came back to life and
      returned to supplying milk.

      St. Manchan's shrine was made in 1130 AD in Clonmacnoise, it contains
      some of his bones including the femur. On the shrine are placed brass
      figures, in 1838 it was placed in Boher church. It is the largest shrine
      of its kind in existence today. The guardians of the shrine through
      the centuries are the Mooney family (my ancestors!)

      St Manchan's Shrine is preserved in Boher church, near-by. This shrine is
      the largest and most magnificent ancient reliquary in Ireland and was made
      at Clonmacnois about AD 1130. It is a gabled box of yew wood with gilt,
      bronze, and enamelled fittings. It still contains the relics of the saint.
      There are ten remaining figures of a possible 50 or 52 on the cover.

      Shrine of Saint Manchan
      http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/page5.html
      http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img20.gif
      http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img21.gif



      St. Manchan lived in Lemonaghan for 19 years. During this time he looked
      after the spiritual needs of the locality. He waas known for his kindness
      and generosity, his wisdom and his knowledge of sacred scripture.

      In 664 AD he became ill and was struck down by the yellow plague a disease
      which desolated Ireland at the time. He died and wad buried locally. After
      his death the place became known as 'Liath Manchan', which means Manchan's
      grey land.
      ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

      How St. Manchan came to Lemonaghan

      In 644, Diarmuid, High King of Ireland was on his way to fight a battle
      against Guaire, the King of Connaught, when he stopped off at Clonmacnois to
      ask the monks for their prayers for his success. Having won the battle, a
      grateful Diarmuid granted Ciarбn, abbot of Clonmacnois, the "island in the
      bog" which we now know as Lemonaghan, provided that he send one of his monks
      there to Christianize it.

      St. Ciarбn chose St. Manchan for the mission. The thriving community that
      was already on the island were converted to Christianity by St. Manchan. He
      then went on to establish a monastery there. He built a cell for his mother,
      St. Mella, in an adjoining piece of high ground, and the intervening bog was
      bridged by a togher or walkway made from sandstone laid on brushwood and
      gravel. St. Manchan is alleged to have taken a vow never to look at a woman
      as part of his orders, so he is supposed to have had to sit back to back
      with his mother in order to communicate with her.

      St. Manchan had many followers at Lemonaghan and ancient headstones still
      survive from the era. St. Manchan's well was used for cures since pagan
      times, and continues to be used for a variety of cures today, as is the holy
      water font in the ruined church in the graveyard.
      ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤


      St. Manchan
      a visit to a historic Offaly centre Monday, 24th January
      Midland Tribune 27th April 1935
      By Tomas O'Cleirigh, M.A., National Museum.

      I was in the little two-horse train which labours west from Clara to
      Banagher and the outlook was desolate. There was another chap in the
      carriage. He sat hunched up in the corner with his nose to the window. One
      glance convinced me that it was useless to say anything and there the two of
      us kept on staring rather lovingly at a wilderness of bog stretching away to
      the Slieve Bloom Mountains. It seemed to me that there was a kind of
      promised land on the other side. On past a few scattered farm houses some
      grey boulders and the ruins of a church. I found myself thinking dismally
      enough of the tourists. After all what do they get? Just ruins, ruins and
      more ruins- the saddest ruins in Europe. Then suddenly I heard my friend of
      the opposite corner speak in a mournful kind of way with his nose still
      glued to the window - "That's Leamanaghan, a quare kind of place, decent
      people, too, the best in the world, people who'd give you all the milk you
      could drink but wouldn't sell a drop of it for all the gold in Ireland and
      it's all by raison of a cow, saint Manchan's cow."

      The Grey Land

      I went through a storm of real Irish rain to see Leamanaghan that very
      evening. It is four miles from Ferbane in County Offaly and hidden away in a
      vast bog region which is dotted with scattered boulders of magnesian
      limestone. The general depression is summed up in the name - Liath Manchan -
      the grey land of Manchan. Aye! The grey, lonely, chill land of Manchan. St.
      Manchan lived here and died in A.D. 664. That might have been only
      yesterday, however as far as the good neighbours are concerned because he is
      the one subject over which every man, woman and child can get really
      voluble.

      I was taken to see the ruins of his church and then down to his well and
      heard how when you are sick should pray here, walk three times round it and
      then, go back and leave a little present for the saint himself in the window
      of the church. He had quite a good collection when I was there - a strangely
      human and pathetic little collection among which I noticed a girl's brooch,
      some small religious articles, a boy's penknife, a G.A.A. footballer's medal
      and strangest gift of all for a saint of Manchan's calibre - a demure little
      vanity box! After that I was told that on the 24th January when all the rest
      of the world works, the people of Leamanaghan just take a holiday and make
      merry because it would be the unpardonable sin to think of work on their
      Saint's day.

      The Saint's Cow

      They have all kinds of stories about the good saint but the best one of them
      all explains why Leamanaghan people don't sell milk. Here it is -
      Saint Manchan had a cow - a wonderful cow that used to give milk to the
      whole countryside - good, rich milk for which no charge was ever made by the
      saint. Then, the people of the neighbouring Kill Managhan got jealous and
      watched and there chance. One fine day when Manchan was absent they came and
      stole the cow and started to drive her along the togher through the bog back
      home to Kill Managhan. The good cow, suspecting something was wrong, went
      backwards and most unwillingly, fighting, struggling and disputing every
      inch of the way. Now she'd slip designedly on the stones: again she'd lie
      down but every where she went, she managed to leave some trace of her rough
      passage on the stones of the togher. The marks are there to this day, - hoof
      marks, tail marks - every kind of marks and the chef-d'oeuvre of them all
      has a place of honour at the entrance to the little school. Alas! In spite
      of that very gallant resistance, the cow was finally driven to Kill
      Managhan. There, horrible to say, she was killed and skinned.

      In the meantime, the saint returned, missed his cow, and straightaway
      started in pursuit. He succeeded in tracing the thieves by the marks on the
      stones and arrived just at the moment when she was about to be boiled. He
      carefully picked the portions out of the cauldron pieced them together,
      struck at them with his stick and immediately the cow became alive again.
      She was every bit as good as ever, too, except that she was a wee bit lame
      on account of one small portion of a foot which was lost. She continued to
      supply the milk as before, and, of course, no charge was made by the saint.
      Ever since the famous custom still lives on, and good milk is given away but
      never gold by the loyal people of Leamanaghan. Now, can any lover of the
      grand faith of Medievaldom beat that?

      The very old vellum books state that Manchan of Liath was like unto
      Hieronomus in habits and learning. I can well believe it. Some distance away
      from the church is the little rectangle cell which he built for his mother -
      Saint Mella. Cold, austere and with no window, you get the shivers by even
      looking at it. There is also a large flag-stone on the togher leading from
      the well, and they say the saint and his mother used to meet here every day
      and sit down back to back without speaking a word because the saint had
      vowed never to speak to a woman!

      A Famous Shrine

      Leamanaghan people are, I gather, a tenacious class. Not only have they so
      zealously guarded the cow tradition but they have succeeded, despite the
      groans of sundry learned antiquarians, in still keeping in their midst the
      saint's precious shrine. It has a special altar all to itself in the church
      of Boher. But the first thing I noticed when I went along to see it was a
      wonderful green in a Harry Clarke window. The shrine itself has been many
      times described, notably so by the Rev James Graves in 1875.
      ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

      St. Manchan is credited with writing a poem in Irish that describes the
      desire of the green martyrs:

      Grant me sweet Christ the grace to find-
      Son of the living God!-
      A small hut in a lonesome spot
      To make it my abode.
      A little pool but very clear
      To stand beside the place
      Where all men's sins are washed away
      By sanctifying grace.
      A pleasant woodland all about
      To shield it (the hut) from the wind,
      And make a home for singing birds
      Before it and behind.
      A southern aspect for the heat
      A stream along its foot,
      A smooth green lawn with rich top soil
      Propitious to all fruit.
      My choice of men to live with me
      And pray to God as well;
      Quiet men of humble mind --
      Their number I shall tell.
      Four files of three or three of four
      To give the Psalter forth;
      Six to pray by the south church wall
      And six along the north.
      Two by two my dozen friends --
      To tell the number right --
      Praying with me to move the King
      Who gives the sun its light.


      St Manach's Shrine
      http://www.offalyhistory.com/content/reading_resources/books_articles/mancha
      ns_shrine.htm
      or
      http://tinyurl.com/43qwo


      St. Cadoc, Cadoc, Bishop and Martyr of Llancarvan, Wales
      (Docus, Cathmael, Cadvael, Codocus)
      ---------------------------------------------------
      Died c. 580.
      Cadoc was the son of a robber, one of the lesser kings of Wales, who
      with an armed band of 300 men had stolen the daughter of a neighbouring
      chieftain for his wife. In this ugly episode 200 of his followers
      perished, and out of this unpromising union was born Cadoc, the Welsh
      saint, founder of the monastery of Llancarvan.

      It is hardly credible that form so wild and barbarous a background
      should have come such a gentle and enlightened prince, but fortunately
      his erratic and impulsive father placed him in the care of an Irish monk
      whose cow he had stolen and who had been bold enough to demand its
      return. From this good man Cadoc learned the rudiments of Latin, and
      after pursuing his studies in Ireland, preferred the life of a priest to
      that of a prince.

      Stories are told of how one day in his poverty, during a famine, when he
      sat with his books in his cell, a white mouse ran suddenly on to the
      table from a hole in the wall and put down a grain of corn. Cadoc
      followed it and found in the cellar beneath him an old Celtic
      subterranean granary stacked with grain. It is also said that once he
      hid himself in a wood from an armed swineherd of an enemy tribe, and
      there came a wild boar, white with age, who, disturbed by his presence,
      made three fierce bounds in his direction and then disappeared. Cadoc
      marked the spot with three tree branches, and it became the site of his
      great church and abbey of Llancarvan. He himself took an active part in
      its building, and it became a busy centre of industry, "The best of
      patriots," he said, "is he who tills the soil."

      When, on one occasion, a band of robbers came to pillage the monastery,
      Cadoc and his monks went out to meet them with their harps, chanting as
      they went, and the marauders were so surprised by their attitude and so
      enchanted by the music that they withdrew.

      But the best story is that of his parents' conversion. It was a happy
      day when by the river they made public profession of their faith. The
      robber king had found his Saviour, and father and son together recited
      the Psalm: "The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble."

      Cadoc later took refuge from the Anglo-Saxons in the Isle of Flatholmes,
      and then in Brittany, where he established another monastery upon a
      small island to which he built a stone bridge so that the children could
      cross to his school. Finally he returned to Britain and, obeying his own
      maxim: "Would you find glory? March to the grave," deliberately cut
      himself off from the shelter of his own monastery of Llancarvan, and
      lived among the Saxon settlements to console the native Christians who
      had survived the massacres of the pagan invaders. This was at Weedon in
      Northamptonshire, and there he met with a martyr's death. While
      celebrating the Eucharist one day, the service was rudely disturbed by
      Saxon horsemen, and Cadoc was slain as he served at the altar (Gill).


      Troparion of St Cadoc Tone 5
      Having been raised to piety, O Hierarch Cadoc,/ thou didst dedicate thy
      life to God,/ serving Him in the monastic state./ As with joyful heart
      thou didst fulfil thy daily obedience,/ caring for the earthly needs of
      countless paupers,/ look now upon our spiritual poverty/ and beseech
      Christ our God,/ that He will grant us great mercy.

      Kontakion of St Cadoc Tone 5
      We honour thee with hymns, O righteous Hierarch Cadoc,/ for the
      pilgrimage of thy life was found pleasing to God,/ Who in His goodness
      adorned thee with authority,/ and as thou didst receive the crown of
      martyrdom,/ whilst serving the Holy Mysteries,/ pray for us that we also
      may be blessed to die in Christ.


      Sources:
      ========

      Benedictine Monks of St. Augustine Abbey, Ramsgate.
      (1947). The Book of Saints. NY: Macmillan.

      D'Arcy, M. R. (1974). The Saints of Ireland. Saint Paul, Minnesota:
      Irish American Cultural Institute. [This is probably the most
      useful book to choose to own on the Irish saints. The author
      provides a great deal of historical context in which to place the
      lives of the saints.}

      Gill, F. C. (1958). The Glorious Company: Lives of Great Christians
      for Daily Devotion, vol. I. London: Epworth Press.

      Montague, H. P. (1981). The Saints and Martyrs of Ireland.
      Guildford: Billing & Sons.
    • ambrois@xtra.co.nz
      Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= * St. Guasacht of Granard * St. Manach of Lemonaghan * St.
      Message 2 of 15 , Jan 23, 2014
      • 0 Attachment
        Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January

        =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
        * St. Guasacht of Granard
        * St. Manach of Lemonaghan
        * St. Cadoc of Wales
        =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=


        St. Guasacht of Granard,
        Bishop in Ireland, Son of Saint Patrick's former master
        ----------------------------------------------------
        4th century. Guasacht was the son of Maelchu (Miluic), the master under
        whom Saint Patrick worked as a slave in Ireland. Maelchu set fire to his
        home, locked the doors, and perished in the flames rather than meet
        Patrick again. Guasacht, however, was converted by Patrick, whom he
        helped in the evangelization of Ireland, both as a layman and later as
        bishop of Granard (County Longford). His two sisters, known as the Emers
        (f.d. December 11), also became Christians and lived as monastics
        (Benedictines, D'Arcy, Montague).


        St. Manach of Lemonaghan
        ---------------------------------------
        St. Manchan lived in Leamonaghan, it is about two kilometres from
        Pollagh. St. Kieran of Clonmacnoise gave him some land and he formed a
        monastery in the year 645 AD. Nothing now remains but the ruins and the
        surrounding graveyard. The foundations of the original buildings may still
        be traced but the larger ruins are those of a church built at a later date.

        About 500m from the monastery is a little stone house which Monchan built
        for his mother Mella. This place is known locally as Kell and the ruins of
        the house can still be visited today. It is said that one day the saint was
        thirsty and there was no water at the monastery. He struck a rock and a
        spring well bubbled up, it is now known as St. Manahan's well. It is visited
        by people from all around especially on January 24 each year. It is claimed
        that many people have been cured of diseases after visiting the well.

        There are many stories about the saint. One of the most famous of them
        explains why the people of Lemonaghan will not sell milk. St. Manchan had a
        cow that used to give milk to the whole country side for which there was no
        charge. The cow became famous and the neighbouring people of Kill-Managhan
        got jealous and stole his cow. When St. Manchan eventually found his cow it
        was dead, he struck it with a stick and the cow came back to life and
        returned to supplying milk.

        St. Manchan's shrine was made in 1130 AD in Clonmacnoise, it contains
        some of his bones including the femur. On the shrine are placed brass
        figures, in 1838 it was placed in Boher church. It is the largest shrine
        of its kind in existence today. The guardians of the shrine through
        the centuries are the Mooney family (my ancestors!)

        St Manchan's Shrine is preserved in Boher church, near-by. This shrine is
        the largest and most magnificent ancient reliquary in Ireland and was made
        at Clonmacnois about AD 1130. It is a gabled box of yew wood with gilt,
        bronze, and enamelled fittings. It still contains the relics of the saint.
        There are ten remaining figures of a possible 50 or 52 on the cover.

        Shrine of Saint Manchan
        http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/page5.html
        http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img20.gif
        http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img21.gif



        St. Manchan lived in Lemonaghan for 19 years. During this time he looked
        after the spiritual needs of the locality. He waas known for his kindness
        and generosity, his wisdom and his knowledge of sacred scripture.

        In 664 AD he became ill and was struck down by the yellow plague a disease
        which desolated Ireland at the time. He died and wad buried locally. After
        his death the place became known as 'Liath Manchan', which means Manchan's
        grey land.
        ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

        How St. Manchan came to Lemonaghan

        In 644, Diarmuid, High King of Ireland was on his way to fight a battle
        against Guaire, the King of Connaught, when he stopped off at Clonmacnois to
        ask the monks for their prayers for his success. Having won the battle, a
        grateful Diarmuid granted Ciarбn, abbot of Clonmacnois, the "island in the
        bog" which we now know as Lemonaghan, provided that he send one of his monks
        there to Christianize it.

        St. Ciarбn chose St. Manchan for the mission. The thriving community that
        was already on the island were converted to Christianity by St. Manchan. He
        then went on to establish a monastery there. He built a cell for his mother,
        St. Mella, in an adjoining piece of high ground, and the intervening bog was
        bridged by a togher or walkway made from sandstone laid on brushwood and
        gravel. St. Manchan is alleged to have taken a vow never to look at a woman
        as part of his orders, so he is supposed to have had to sit back to back
        with his mother in order to communicate with her.

        St. Manchan had many followers at Lemonaghan and ancient headstones still
        survive from the era. St. Manchan's well was used for cures since pagan
        times, and continues to be used for a variety of cures today, as is the holy
        water font in the ruined church in the graveyard.
        ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤


        St. Manchan
        a visit to a historic Offaly centre Monday, 24th January
        Midland Tribune 27th April 1935
        By Tomas O'Cleirigh, M.A., National Museum.

        I was in the little two-horse train which labours west from Clara to
        Banagher and the outlook was desolate. There was another chap in the
        carriage. He sat hunched up in the corner with his nose to the window. One
        glance convinced me that it was useless to say anything and there the two of
        us kept on staring rather lovingly at a wilderness of bog stretching away to
        the Slieve Bloom Mountains. It seemed to me that there was a kind of
        promised land on the other side. On past a few scattered farm houses some
        grey boulders and the ruins of a church. I found myself thinking dismally
        enough of the tourists. After all what do they get? Just ruins, ruins and
        more ruins- the saddest ruins in Europe. Then suddenly I heard my friend of
        the opposite corner speak in a mournful kind of way with his nose still
        glued to the window - "That's Leamanaghan, a quare kind of place, decent
        people, too, the best in the world, people who'd give you all the milk you
        could drink but wouldn't sell a drop of it for all the gold in Ireland and
        it's all by raison of a cow, saint Manchan's cow."

        The Grey Land

        I went through a storm of real Irish rain to see Leamanaghan that very
        evening. It is four miles from Ferbane in County Offaly and hidden away in a
        vast bog region which is dotted with scattered boulders of magnesian
        limestone. The general depression is summed up in the name - Liath Manchan -
        the grey land of Manchan. Aye! The grey, lonely, chill land of Manchan. St.
        Manchan lived here and died in A.D. 664. That might have been only
        yesterday, however as far as the good neighbours are concerned because he is
        the one subject over which every man, woman and child can get really
        voluble.

        I was taken to see the ruins of his church and then down to his well and
        heard how when you are sick should pray here, walk three times round it and
        then, go back and leave a little present for the saint himself in the window
        of the church. He had quite a good collection when I was there - a strangely
        human and pathetic little collection among which I noticed a girl's brooch,
        some small religious articles, a boy's penknife, a G.A.A. footballer's medal
        and strangest gift of all for a saint of Manchan's calibre - a demure little
        vanity box! After that I was told that on the 24th January when all the rest
        of the world works, the people of Leamanaghan just take a holiday and make
        merry because it would be the unpardonable sin to think of work on their
        Saint's day.

        The Saint's Cow

        They have all kinds of stories about the good saint but the best one of them
        all explains why Leamanaghan people don't sell milk. Here it is -
        Saint Manchan had a cow - a wonderful cow that used to give milk to the
        whole countryside - good, rich milk for which no charge was ever made by the
        saint. Then, the people of the neighbouring Kill Managhan got jealous and
        watched and there chance. One fine day when Manchan was absent they came and
        stole the cow and started to drive her along the togher through the bog back
        home to Kill Managhan. The good cow, suspecting something was wrong, went
        backwards and most unwillingly, fighting, struggling and disputing every
        inch of the way. Now she'd slip designedly on the stones: again she'd lie
        down but every where she went, she managed to leave some trace of her rough
        passage on the stones of the togher. The marks are there to this day, - hoof
        marks, tail marks - every kind of marks and the chef-d'oeuvre of them all
        has a place of honour at the entrance to the little school. Alas! In spite
        of that very gallant resistance, the cow was finally driven to Kill
        Managhan. There, horrible to say, she was killed and skinned.

        In the meantime, the saint returned, missed his cow, and straightaway
        started in pursuit. He succeeded in tracing the thieves by the marks on the
        stones and arrived just at the moment when she was about to be boiled. He
        carefully picked the portions out of the cauldron pieced them together,
        struck at them with his stick and immediately the cow became alive again.
        She was every bit as good as ever, too, except that she was a wee bit lame
        on account of one small portion of a foot which was lost. She continued to
        supply the milk as before, and, of course, no charge was made by the saint.
        Ever since the famous custom still lives on, and good milk is given away but
        never gold by the loyal people of Leamanaghan. Now, can any lover of the
        grand faith of Medievaldom beat that?

        The very old vellum books state that Manchan of Liath was like unto
        Hieronomus in habits and learning. I can well believe it. Some distance away
        from the church is the little rectangle cell which he built for his mother -
        Saint Mella. Cold, austere and with no window, you get the shivers by even
        looking at it. There is also a large flag-stone on the togher leading from
        the well, and they say the saint and his mother used to meet here every day
        and sit down back to back without speaking a word because the saint had
        vowed never to speak to a woman!

        A Famous Shrine

        Leamanaghan people are, I gather, a tenacious class. Not only have they so
        zealously guarded the cow tradition but they have succeeded, despite the
        groans of sundry learned antiquarians, in still keeping in their midst the
        saint's precious shrine. It has a special altar all to itself in the church
        of Boher. But the first thing I noticed when I went along to see it was a
        wonderful green in a Harry Clarke window. The shrine itself has been many
        times described, notably so by the Rev James Graves in 1875.
        ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

        St. Manchan is credited with writing a poem in Irish that describes the
        desire of the green martyrs:

        Grant me sweet Christ the grace to find-
        Son of the living God!-
        A small hut in a lonesome spot
        To make it my abode.
        A little pool but very clear
        To stand beside the place
        Where all men's sins are washed away
        By sanctifying grace.
        A pleasant woodland all about
        To shield it (the hut) from the wind,
        And make a home for singing birds
        Before it and behind.
        A southern aspect for the heat
        A stream along its foot,
        A smooth green lawn with rich top soil
        Propitious to all fruit.
        My choice of men to live with me
        And pray to God as well;
        Quiet men of humble mind --
        Their number I shall tell.
        Four files of three or three of four
        To give the Psalter forth;
        Six to pray by the south church wall
        And six along the north.
        Two by two my dozen friends --
        To tell the number right --
        Praying with me to move the King
        Who gives the sun its light.


        St Manach's Shrine
        http://www.offalyhistory.com/content/reading_resources/books_articles/mancha
        ns_shrine.htm
        or
        http://tinyurl.com/43qwo


        St. Cadoc, Cadoc, Bishop and Martyr of Llancarvan, Wales
        (Docus, Cathmael, Cadvael, Codocus)
        ---------------------------------------------------
        Died c. 580.
        Cadoc was the son of a robber, one of the lesser kings of Wales, who
        with an armed band of 300 men had stolen the daughter of a neighbouring
        chieftain for his wife. In this ugly episode 200 of his followers
        perished, and out of this unpromising union was born Cadoc, the Welsh
        saint, founder of the monastery of Llancarvan.

        It is hardly credible that form so wild and barbarous a background
        should have come such a gentle and enlightened prince, but fortunately
        his erratic and impulsive father placed him in the care of an Irish monk
        whose cow he had stolen and who had been bold enough to demand its
        return. From this good man Cadoc learned the rudiments of Latin, and
        after pursuing his studies in Ireland, preferred the life of a priest to
        that of a prince.

        Stories are told of how one day in his poverty, during a famine, when he
        sat with his books in his cell, a white mouse ran suddenly on to the
        table from a hole in the wall and put down a grain of corn. Cadoc
        followed it and found in the cellar beneath him an old Celtic
        subterranean granary stacked with grain. It is also said that once he
        hid himself in a wood from an armed swineherd of an enemy tribe, and
        there came a wild boar, white with age, who, disturbed by his presence,
        made three fierce bounds in his direction and then disappeared. Cadoc
        marked the spot with three tree branches, and it became the site of his
        great church and abbey of Llancarvan. He himself took an active part in
        its building, and it became a busy centre of industry, "The best of
        patriots," he said, "is he who tills the soil."

        When, on one occasion, a band of robbers came to pillage the monastery,
        Cadoc and his monks went out to meet them with their harps, chanting as
        they went, and the marauders were so surprised by their attitude and so
        enchanted by the music that they withdrew.

        But the best story is that of his parents' conversion. It was a happy
        day when by the river they made public profession of their faith. The
        robber king had found his Saviour, and father and son together recited
        the Psalm: "The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble."

        Cadoc later took refuge from the Anglo-Saxons in the Isle of Flatholmes,
        and then in Brittany, where he established another monastery upon a
        small island to which he built a stone bridge so that the children could
        cross to his school. Finally he returned to Britain and, obeying his own
        maxim: "Would you find glory? March to the grave," deliberately cut
        himself off from the shelter of his own monastery of Llancarvan, and
        lived among the Saxon settlements to console the native Christians who
        had survived the massacres of the pagan invaders. This was at Weedon in
        Northamptonshire, and there he met with a martyr's death. While
        celebrating the Eucharist one day, the service was rudely disturbed by
        Saxon horsemen, and Cadoc was slain as he served at the altar (Gill).


        Troparion of St Cadoc Tone 5
        Having been raised to piety, O Hierarch Cadoc,/ thou didst dedicate thy
        life to God,/ serving Him in the monastic state./ As with joyful heart
        thou didst fulfil thy daily obedience,/ caring for the earthly needs of
        countless paupers,/ look now upon our spiritual poverty/ and beseech
        Christ our God,/ that He will grant us great mercy.

        Kontakion of St Cadoc Tone 5
        We honour thee with hymns, O righteous Hierarch Cadoc,/ for the
        pilgrimage of thy life was found pleasing to God,/ Who in His goodness
        adorned thee with authority,/ and as thou didst receive the crown of
        martyrdom,/ whilst serving the Holy Mysteries,/ pray for us that we also
        may be blessed to die in Christ.


        Sources:
        ========

        Benedictine Monks of St. Augustine Abbey, Ramsgate.
        (1947). The Book of Saints. NY: Macmillan.

        D'Arcy, M. R. (1974). The Saints of Ireland. Saint Paul, Minnesota:
        Irish American Cultural Institute. [This is probably the most
        useful book to choose to own on the Irish saints. The author
        provides a great deal of historical context in which to place the
        lives of the saints.}

        Gill, F. C. (1958). The Glorious Company: Lives of Great Christians
        for Daily Devotion, vol. I. London: Epworth Press.

        Montague, H. P. (1981). The Saints and Martyrs of Ireland.
        Guildford: Billing & Sons.
      • ambrois@xtra.co.nz
        Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= * St. Guasacht of Granard * St. Manach of Lemonaghan * St.
        Message 3 of 15 , Jan 23, 2014
        • 0 Attachment
          Celtic and Old English Saints 24 January

          =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
          * St. Guasacht of Granard
          * St. Manach of Lemonaghan
          * St. Cadoc of Wales
          =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=


          St. Guasacht of Granard,
          Bishop in Ireland, Son of Saint Patrick's former master
          ----------------------------------------------------
          4th century. Guasacht was the son of Maelchu (Miluic), the master under
          whom Saint Patrick worked as a slave in Ireland. Maelchu set fire to his
          home, locked the doors, and perished in the flames rather than meet
          Patrick again. Guasacht, however, was converted by Patrick, whom he
          helped in the evangelization of Ireland, both as a layman and later as
          bishop of Granard (County Longford). His two sisters, known as the Emers
          (f.d. December 11), also became Christians and lived as monastics
          (Benedictines, D'Arcy, Montague).


          St. Manach of Lemonaghan
          ---------------------------------------
          St. Manchan lived in Leamonaghan, it is about two kilometres from
          Pollagh. St. Kieran of Clonmacnoise gave him some land and he formed a
          monastery in the year 645 AD. Nothing now remains but the ruins and the
          surrounding graveyard. The foundations of the original buildings may still
          be traced but the larger ruins are those of a church built at a later date.

          About 500m from the monastery is a little stone house which Monchan built
          for his mother Mella. This place is known locally as Kell and the ruins of
          the house can still be visited today. It is said that one day the saint was
          thirsty and there was no water at the monastery. He struck a rock and a
          spring well bubbled up, it is now known as St. Manahan's well. It is visited
          by people from all around especially on January 24 each year. It is claimed
          that many people have been cured of diseases after visiting the well.

          There are many stories about the saint. One of the most famous of them
          explains why the people of Lemonaghan will not sell milk. St. Manchan had a
          cow that used to give milk to the whole country side for which there was no
          charge. The cow became famous and the neighbouring people of Kill-Managhan
          got jealous and stole his cow. When St. Manchan eventually found his cow it
          was dead, he struck it with a stick and the cow came back to life and
          returned to supplying milk.

          St. Manchan's shrine was made in 1130 AD in Clonmacnoise, it contains
          some of his bones including the femur. On the shrine are placed brass
          figures, in 1838 it was placed in Boher church. It is the largest shrine
          of its kind in existence today. The guardians of the shrine through
          the centuries are the Mooney family (my ancestors!)

          St Manchan's Shrine is preserved in Boher church, near-by. This shrine is
          the largest and most magnificent ancient reliquary in Ireland and was made
          at Clonmacnois about AD 1130. It is a gabled box of yew wood with gilt,
          bronze, and enamelled fittings. It still contains the relics of the saint.
          There are ten remaining figures of a possible 50 or 52 on the cover.

          Shrine of Saint Manchan
          http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/page5.html
          http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img20.gif
          http://www.ardaghdiocese.org/img21.gif



          St. Manchan lived in Lemonaghan for 19 years. During this time he looked
          after the spiritual needs of the locality. He waas known for his kindness
          and generosity, his wisdom and his knowledge of sacred scripture.

          In 664 AD he became ill and was struck down by the yellow plague a disease
          which desolated Ireland at the time. He died and wad buried locally. After
          his death the place became known as 'Liath Manchan', which means Manchan's
          grey land.
          ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

          How St. Manchan came to Lemonaghan

          In 644, Diarmuid, High King of Ireland was on his way to fight a battle
          against Guaire, the King of Connaught, when he stopped off at Clonmacnois to
          ask the monks for their prayers for his success. Having won the battle, a
          grateful Diarmuid granted Ciarбn, abbot of Clonmacnois, the "island in the
          bog" which we now know as Lemonaghan, provided that he send one of his monks
          there to Christianize it.

          St. Ciarбn chose St. Manchan for the mission. The thriving community that
          was already on the island were converted to Christianity by St. Manchan. He
          then went on to establish a monastery there. He built a cell for his mother,
          St. Mella, in an adjoining piece of high ground, and the intervening bog was
          bridged by a togher or walkway made from sandstone laid on brushwood and
          gravel. St. Manchan is alleged to have taken a vow never to look at a woman
          as part of his orders, so he is supposed to have had to sit back to back
          with his mother in order to communicate with her.

          St. Manchan had many followers at Lemonaghan and ancient headstones still
          survive from the era. St. Manchan's well was used for cures since pagan
          times, and continues to be used for a variety of cures today, as is the holy
          water font in the ruined church in the graveyard.
          ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤


          St. Manchan
          a visit to a historic Offaly centre Monday, 24th January
          Midland Tribune 27th April 1935
          By Tomas O'Cleirigh, M.A., National Museum.

          I was in the little two-horse train which labours west from Clara to
          Banagher and the outlook was desolate. There was another chap in the
          carriage. He sat hunched up in the corner with his nose to the window. One
          glance convinced me that it was useless to say anything and there the two of
          us kept on staring rather lovingly at a wilderness of bog stretching away to
          the Slieve Bloom Mountains. It seemed to me that there was a kind of
          promised land on the other side. On past a few scattered farm houses some
          grey boulders and the ruins of a church. I found myself thinking dismally
          enough of the tourists. After all what do they get? Just ruins, ruins and
          more ruins- the saddest ruins in Europe. Then suddenly I heard my friend of
          the opposite corner speak in a mournful kind of way with his nose still
          glued to the window - "That's Leamanaghan, a quare kind of place, decent
          people, too, the best in the world, people who'd give you all the milk you
          could drink but wouldn't sell a drop of it for all the gold in Ireland and
          it's all by raison of a cow, saint Manchan's cow."

          The Grey Land

          I went through a storm of real Irish rain to see Leamanaghan that very
          evening. It is four miles from Ferbane in County Offaly and hidden away in a
          vast bog region which is dotted with scattered boulders of magnesian
          limestone. The general depression is summed up in the name - Liath Manchan -
          the grey land of Manchan. Aye! The grey, lonely, chill land of Manchan. St.
          Manchan lived here and died in A.D. 664. That might have been only
          yesterday, however as far as the good neighbours are concerned because he is
          the one subject over which every man, woman and child can get really
          voluble.

          I was taken to see the ruins of his church and then down to his well and
          heard how when you are sick should pray here, walk three times round it and
          then, go back and leave a little present for the saint himself in the window
          of the church. He had quite a good collection when I was there - a strangely
          human and pathetic little collection among which I noticed a girl's brooch,
          some small religious articles, a boy's penknife, a G.A.A. footballer's medal
          and strangest gift of all for a saint of Manchan's calibre - a demure little
          vanity box! After that I was told that on the 24th January when all the rest
          of the world works, the people of Leamanaghan just take a holiday and make
          merry because it would be the unpardonable sin to think of work on their
          Saint's day.

          The Saint's Cow

          They have all kinds of stories about the good saint but the best one of them
          all explains why Leamanaghan people don't sell milk. Here it is -
          Saint Manchan had a cow - a wonderful cow that used to give milk to the
          whole countryside - good, rich milk for which no charge was ever made by the
          saint. Then, the people of the neighbouring Kill Managhan got jealous and
          watched and there chance. One fine day when Manchan was absent they came and
          stole the cow and started to drive her along the togher through the bog back
          home to Kill Managhan. The good cow, suspecting something was wrong, went
          backwards and most unwillingly, fighting, struggling and disputing every
          inch of the way. Now she'd slip designedly on the stones: again she'd lie
          down but every where she went, she managed to leave some trace of her rough
          passage on the stones of the togher. The marks are there to this day, - hoof
          marks, tail marks - every kind of marks and the chef-d'oeuvre of them all
          has a place of honour at the entrance to the little school. Alas! In spite
          of that very gallant resistance, the cow was finally driven to Kill
          Managhan. There, horrible to say, she was killed and skinned.

          In the meantime, the saint returned, missed his cow, and straightaway
          started in pursuit. He succeeded in tracing the thieves by the marks on the
          stones and arrived just at the moment when she was about to be boiled. He
          carefully picked the portions out of the cauldron pieced them together,
          struck at them with his stick and immediately the cow became alive again.
          She was every bit as good as ever, too, except that she was a wee bit lame
          on account of one small portion of a foot which was lost. She continued to
          supply the milk as before, and, of course, no charge was made by the saint.
          Ever since the famous custom still lives on, and good milk is given away but
          never gold by the loyal people of Leamanaghan. Now, can any lover of the
          grand faith of Medievaldom beat that?

          The very old vellum books state that Manchan of Liath was like unto
          Hieronomus in habits and learning. I can well believe it. Some distance away
          from the church is the little rectangle cell which he built for his mother -
          Saint Mella. Cold, austere and with no window, you get the shivers by even
          looking at it. There is also a large flag-stone on the togher leading from
          the well, and they say the saint and his mother used to meet here every day
          and sit down back to back without speaking a word because the saint had
          vowed never to speak to a woman!

          A Famous Shrine

          Leamanaghan people are, I gather, a tenacious class. Not only have they so
          zealously guarded the cow tradition but they have succeeded, despite the
          groans of sundry learned antiquarians, in still keeping in their midst the
          saint's precious shrine. It has a special altar all to itself in the church
          of Boher. But the first thing I noticed when I went along to see it was a
          wonderful green in a Harry Clarke window. The shrine itself has been many
          times described, notably so by the Rev James Graves in 1875.
          ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤

          St. Manchan is credited with writing a poem in Irish that describes the
          desire of the green martyrs:

          Grant me sweet Christ the grace to find-
          Son of the living God!-
          A small hut in a lonesome spot
          To make it my abode.
          A little pool but very clear
          To stand beside the place
          Where all men's sins are washed away
          By sanctifying grace.
          A pleasant woodland all about
          To shield it (the hut) from the wind,
          And make a home for singing birds
          Before it and behind.
          A southern aspect for the heat
          A stream along its foot,
          A smooth green lawn with rich top soil
          Propitious to all fruit.
          My choice of men to live with me
          And pray to God as well;
          Quiet men of humble mind --
          Their number I shall tell.
          Four files of three or three of four
          To give the Psalter forth;
          Six to pray by the south church wall
          And six along the north.
          Two by two my dozen friends --
          To tell the number right --
          Praying with me to move the King
          Who gives the sun its light.


          St Manach's Shrine
          http://www.offalyhistory.com/content/reading_resources/books_articles/mancha
          ns_shrine.htm
          or
          http://tinyurl.com/43qwo


          St. Cadoc, Cadoc, Bishop and Martyr of Llancarvan, Wales
          (Docus, Cathmael, Cadvael, Codocus)
          ---------------------------------------------------
          Died c. 580.
          Cadoc was the son of a robber, one of the lesser kings of Wales, who
          with an armed band of 300 men had stolen the daughter of a neighbouring
          chieftain for his wife. In this ugly episode 200 of his followers
          perished, and out of this unpromising union was born Cadoc, the Welsh
          saint, founder of the monastery of Llancarvan.

          It is hardly credible that form so wild and barbarous a background
          should have come such a gentle and enlightened prince, but fortunately
          his erratic and impulsive father placed him in the care of an Irish monk
          whose cow he had stolen and who had been bold enough to demand its
          return. From this good man Cadoc learned the rudiments of Latin, and
          after pursuing his studies in Ireland, preferred the life of a priest to
          that of a prince.

          Stories are told of how one day in his poverty, during a famine, when he
          sat with his books in his cell, a white mouse ran suddenly on to the
          table from a hole in the wall and put down a grain of corn. Cadoc
          followed it and found in the cellar beneath him an old Celtic
          subterranean granary stacked with grain. It is also said that once he
          hid himself in a wood from an armed swineherd of an enemy tribe, and
          there came a wild boar, white with age, who, disturbed by his presence,
          made three fierce bounds in his direction and then disappeared. Cadoc
          marked the spot with three tree branches, and it became the site of his
          great church and abbey of Llancarvan. He himself took an active part in
          its building, and it became a busy centre of industry, "The best of
          patriots," he said, "is he who tills the soil."

          When, on one occasion, a band of robbers came to pillage the monastery,
          Cadoc and his monks went out to meet them with their harps, chanting as
          they went, and the marauders were so surprised by their attitude and so
          enchanted by the music that they withdrew.

          But the best story is that of his parents' conversion. It was a happy
          day when by the river they made public profession of their faith. The
          robber king had found his Saviour, and father and son together recited
          the Psalm: "The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble."

          Cadoc later took refuge from the Anglo-Saxons in the Isle of Flatholmes,
          and then in Brittany, where he established another monastery upon a
          small island to which he built a stone bridge so that the children could
          cross to his school. Finally he returned to Britain and, obeying his own
          maxim: "Would you find glory? March to the grave," deliberately cut
          himself off from the shelter of his own monastery of Llancarvan, and
          lived among the Saxon settlements to console the native Christians who
          had survived the massacres of the pagan invaders. This was at Weedon in
          Northamptonshire, and there he met with a martyr's death. While
          celebrating the Eucharist one day, the service was rudely disturbed by
          Saxon horsemen, and Cadoc was slain as he served at the altar (Gill).


          Troparion of St Cadoc Tone 5
          Having been raised to piety, O Hierarch Cadoc,/ thou didst dedicate thy
          life to God,/ serving Him in the monastic state./ As with joyful heart
          thou didst fulfil thy daily obedience,/ caring for the earthly needs of
          countless paupers,/ look now upon our spiritual poverty/ and beseech
          Christ our God,/ that He will grant us great mercy.

          Kontakion of St Cadoc Tone 5
          We honour thee with hymns, O righteous Hierarch Cadoc,/ for the
          pilgrimage of thy life was found pleasing to God,/ Who in His goodness
          adorned thee with authority,/ and as thou didst receive the crown of
          martyrdom,/ whilst serving the Holy Mysteries,/ pray for us that we also
          may be blessed to die in Christ.


          Sources:
          ========

          Benedictine Monks of St. Augustine Abbey, Ramsgate.
          (1947). The Book of Saints. NY: Macmillan.

          D'Arcy, M. R. (1974). The Saints of Ireland. Saint Paul, Minnesota:
          Irish American Cultural Institute. [This is probably the most
          useful book to choose to own on the Irish saints. The author
          provides a great deal of historical context in which to place the
          lives of the saints.}

          Gill, F. C. (1958). The Glorious Company: Lives of Great Christians
          for Daily Devotion, vol. I. London: Epworth Press.

          Montague, H. P. (1981). The Saints and Martyrs of Ireland.
          Guildford: Billing & Sons.
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