Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Feast of St. Brigid

Today is a great Irish feast day, which means the Cotter's are celebrating! Most of our festivities took place this morning, so I thought I'd post early so you have time get in on the fun.

St. Brigid of Kildare was born in the 450's and is a Patron Saint of Ireland. She is the founder of the first women's monastic community in Ireland and is said to have been a friend of St. Patrick. She worked on a dairy farm as a little girl and would often give away milk and butter, which miraculously never ran out. For this reason she is the patron of all things related to milk from dairy farmers to newborns.

Because no St. Brigid celebration would be complete without butter and no Irish celebration would be complete without potatoes, we used a recipe from Catholic Cuisine for  potato pancakes or "boxty cakes".

Some tips:

1. It calls for buttermilk, but if you don't have it just put 1 T. of vinegar in a 1. c measuring cup and add milk until it is level... now you do have buttermilk.
2. Forget about shredding your own potatoes and just used bagged shredded hash browns.

We also made some St. Brigid's Crosses. While traveling St. Brigid visited a dying pagan and sat near his bedside. She began to weave a cross out of the straw like rushes that were on the floor. Upon the man's inquiring as to her work she explained the meaning of the cross and Jesus Christ which brought him to conversion before his death.

It is traditional to make a St. Brigid's cross on her feast day and hang it above your door with the following blessing: "May the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost be on this Cross and on the place where it hangs and on everyone who looks on it".

For directions check out this youtube and enjoy the accent because it is straight from Ireland!

Tonight we will pray the Litany to St. Brigid to wrap up the festivities and get ready for the Feast of the Presentation or Candlemas tomorrow!


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