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Today marks the 1st of February. We've successfully shaken the January Blues and for many of us, things are on the up and up.
Our days are getting longer, the weather is preparing to get warmer and today is a very special and sacred celebration across the island of Ireland...
Today is St. Brigid's Feast Day!
For those who do not know what St. Brigid's Day is all about, although not as famous as St. Patrick's Day, St. Brigid's Day is a staple Irish tradition.
In fact, as of 2023, St. Brigid's Day has become a public holiday in Ireland, celebrating on the first Monday of February (unless the 1st of February falls on a Friday in which case it will occur then).
This day marks the beginning of the Spring in Gaelic traditions. In honour of the day that it is, let us walk you through the story behind St. Brigid's Day:
There are several things associated with Brigid, such as Spring and St. Brigid's Cross, but famously, Brigid is also associated with her cloak (or blanket).
Circa the year 470AD, when searching for a location upon which to build her monastery, Brigid scoped out an area that would offer her a nearby lake for water, a fertile plan for growing crops and an adjacent forest for firewood.
When she approached the King of Leinster with her request for the land, she was refused. Brigid and her sisters prayed that the King would change his mind and show kindness. In the end, she once again met with the King, asking that he give her as much as her "cloak will cover."
The King laughed at the sight of Brigid's cloak, which was too small to be able to build anything on, quite frankly. What he didn't know was that Brigid asked four sisters to take a corner of the cloak each, setting off in different directions.
From sheer will alone, the cloak began to grow, spreading across many acres of land - plenty, for building her monastery on.
The King was shocked, but ultimately rejoiced as he realised that Brigid was God-blessed. He was so amazed that he became a patron of Brigid's monastery and provided monetary assistance often. Later on, this King converted to Christianity.