Feast of St Colum Cille
The gospel for today is the story of the rich young man whom Jesus challenges to sell all and go give the money to the poor. We do not know if St Colm Cille did this but we do know that he was from a royal family and that he gave up all his status and privilege to live the life of a monk.
He was born in the early 6th century and founded monasteries at Derry, Bangor, Darrow and Moone in Co Kildare as well as Sligo. What is interesting is that each of these places also have Celtic High Crosses. He also went to Scotland and settled on the island of Iona, thereby founding one of the great monasteries and centres of learning of the time. St Kevin of Lindasfarne was originally a monk of Iona.
Where I live here, on the Northern shores of Lough Neagh in Ireland, I am on one of the ancients roadways from Derry to the coast where Belfast is now. Just past Belfast on the shoreline is the town of Bangor where Colm Cille founded a monastery.
I often think when I walk to the shop that Colm Cille may have walked along this road.
That is what I love about being a Catholic in Ireland, there are so many contacts with the ancient Church; we have the High Crosses, Holy Wells, Mass rocks and so many other things to remind us of our heritage.
And we must never forget, our heritage is the faith started by Jesus Christ himself!