Saint Columba: Apostle of Caledonia

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Catholic Publication House, 1868 - 171 pages
A narrative from the third vol. of "The Monks of the West."

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Page 38 - We were now treading," said, in the eighteenth century, the celebrated Johnson, who was the first to recall the attention of the British public to this profaned sanctuary — " we were now treading that illustrious island which was once the luminary of the Caledonian regions, whence savage clans and roving barbarians derived the benefits of knowledge, and the blessings of religion.
Page 38 - Whatever withdraws us from the power of our senses ; whatever makes the past, the distant, or the future predominate over the present, advances us in the dignity of thinking beings. Far from me and from my friends be such frigid philosophy, as may conduct us indifferent and unmoved over any ground which has been dignified by wisdom, bravery, or virtue. That man is little to be envied, whose patriotism would not gain force upon the plain of Marathon, or whose piety would not grow warmer among the...
Page 38 - To abstract the mind from all local emotion would be impossible, if it were endeavoured, and would be foolish, if it were possible. Whatever withdraws us from the power of our senses; whatever makes the past, the distant, or the future predominate over the present, advances us in the dignity of thinking beings.
Page 13 - Were all the tribute of Scotia * mine, From its midland to its borders, I would give all for one little cell In my beautiful Derry. For its peace and for its purity, For the white angels that go In crowds from one end to the other, I love my beautiful Deny.
Page 126 - He found Columba lying before the altar, and, placing himself at his side, raised the old abbot's venerable head upon his knees. The whole community soon arrived with lights, and wept as one man at the sight of their dying father. Columba opened his eyes once more, and turned them to his children on either side with a look full of serene and radiant joy. Then with the aid of Diarmid he raised, as best he might, his right hand to bless them all; his hand dropped, the last sigh came from his lips;...
Page 29 - It is not recorded that any among his kindred attempted to hold him back ; but when he acquainted his disciples with his intended emigration, twelve among them decided to follow him. The most ardent of all was a young monk called Mochonna, son of the provincial king of Ulster. In vain Columba represented to him that he ought not to abandon his parents and native soil. " It is thou," answered the young man, " who art my father, the Church is my mother, and my country is where I can gather the largest...
Page 40 - No trace of this feeling, however, remains in a still more characteristic poem, which must have been confided to some traveller as a message from the exile of lona to his country. In this he celebrates, as always, the delight of voyaging round the coast of Ireland, and the beauty of its cliffs and beach. But, above all, he mourns over his exile. " What joy to fly upon the white-crested sea, and to watch the waves break upon the Irish shore...
Page 116 - And from that day until the hour of her death she lived in a tender and faithful union with her husband. "But Columba fortunately was connected with other households more united, where he could admire the happiness of his friends without feeling himself compelled to make peace. From his sanctuary at lona his habitual solicitude and watchful sympathy followed them to their last hour.. One day he was alone with one of the Saxons whom he had converted and attached to his community, and who was the baker...
Page 42 - Upon this the saint added that he would only be admitted to the paschal communion after seven years of penitence. When these were completed, Columba, after having given him the communion with his own hand, sent him back to Ireland to his patron, carrying a sword with an ivory handle for his ransom. The patron, however, moved by the entreaties of his wife, gave the penitent his pardon without ransom. " Why should we accept the price sent to us by the holy Columba ? We are not worthy of it.
Page 40 - From the high prow I look over the sea, and great tears are in my grey eye when I turn to Erin — to Erin, where the songs of the birds are so sweet, and where the clerks sing like the birds ; where the young are so gentle, and the old so wise ; where the great men are so noble to look at, and the women so fair to wed.

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