The Wild Waves


Shall I leave the soft comforts of home, O Lord,
and be without money, power, and honor?
Shall I launch my little boat on the great sparkling ocean,
and go on my own on the deep?

Stand by me, God, when it comes to the wild waves.

– St Brendan


Pilgrimage to Ireland May 6-16, 2014

Pilgrimage to Ireland May 6-16, 2014



Click here for information on theme, itinerary and costs!


Prayer: Divine Light


Divine Light
O God, you who made the sun,
are the sun of my soul
and I love
your radiance.
I love you, O Light eternal;
grant that I may see you
in the brightness of your glory.

Divine Light, proceeding from
the splendour of the trinity
flood my heart with your love,
my mind and my soul
and every part of me,
till I shall be illumined and one with
the light of Christ within me.

– Brendanus Scotus (quoted in Brendan O’Malley’s Lord of Creation)

Centre’s Launch at Navan Centre/Emain Macha, Armagh

P1070489The Centre for Celtic Spirituality is delighted to announce the launch of their new location at the Navan Centre at the ancient site of Emain Macha just outside of the city of Armagh, Northern Ireland. The launch was attended by members of the board, patrons, and the Centre’s staff.


The Rev. Dr. Johnston McMaster spoke about the significance of Celtic Spirituality P1070493as a source of inspiration in today’s well, remarking particularly on the importance of “drinking from our own wells,” or receiving nourishment from the rich Christian spiritual heritage of these lands.


Following Dr. McMaster’s address, the Rev. Grace Clunie, Director for the Centre for Celtic SpiritualitP1070496y, thanked the board and the patrons for their support throughout the years leading up to this event, and for their encouragement of the work and ethos of the Centre. Rev. Clunie reported that she is offering sabbaticals and study opportunities this summer to a number of international clergy and lay people from a variety of denominations, and in the autumn will be leading a course on “The Celtic Spirit in Literature,” along with Dr Tess Maginess of Queens Open University, which will be held at the Navan Centre in Armagh.


Along with having use of the Navan Centre’s coffeP1070506e shop, gift shop, AV theatre, workshop room and outdoor living history exhibit, the Centre for Celtic Spirituality also has a designated library for reading, prayer and reflection. Stocked with books on many aspects of Celtic Spirituality, including theology, prayers, history, and culture, this library will undoubtedly be a valuable resource to many coming from near and far to learn about what the Celtic Christian spiritual heritage to offer to our contemporary world.


We offer a prayer for this new chapter for the Centre for Celtic Spirituality and all who seek enrichment and inspiration in this place:

Bless us, Lord, this day with vision.

May this place be a sacred place,

a telling place,

where heaven and earth meet.

(from Celtic Daily Prayer, p. 290)


Pilgrimage to Sligo 3-6 May 2013

A message from Dermot Jameson from our sister organisation, St Bronagh’s School of Celtic Studies

Dear Pilgrim,
It was wonderful to have had 30+ attending our Imbolg meeting. We hope you enjoyed the day. Now for our Pilgrimage to Sligo from 3rd to 6th May.

We will be staying in the 4-star Sligo Park Hotel. Sheila Ryan, writing in the Irish Times says “There is something deeply rewarding about visiting one of our remote Megalithic sites” Now Carrowmore is the largest group of megalithic tombs in Ireland. Nearby Carrowkeel is also most interesting. One of the Cairns there has a roof box over its entrance, the only one in Ireland apart from Newgrange. Unlike Newgrange, it is aligned with the setting sun at the summer solstice, and the chamber is illuminated for several weeks around midsummer.

We are fortunate to have the services of Damien Brennan as our guide. This is also Yeates country; who does not remember the Lake Isle of Ennisfree from our school days! Damien will also lead us along the Yeats Trail.

The cost of the week-end will be £240. per person sharing. ( £25. single supplement.) This will cover bed, breakfast and evening meal, also cost of the bus and guide. This will be a most interesting week-end including a visit to the famous Tobernalts Holy Well and many other things happening in Sligo including a Slow Cooking Competition Championship! There will be many stalls
like what we experienced in Limerick not so long ago – what about a seaweed bath?

To hold our booking we need 25 Pilgrims booking in quickly. Please send your cheque made out to ” St. Bronagh’s School of Celtic Studies” to Mrs. Pat Doran, 7 Syenite Place, Rostrevor, BT34 3EP, (telephone 417 39644) or e-mail

We look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

Dermot Jameson

Silent Retreat at Drumalis, 3-5 MAY 2013












The heart is often described as a cave that we are invited to enter to find both ourselves and the loving source of our self. Fr Laurence introduces meditation as a way to make this true in our own experience.

Laurence Freeman OSB is a Benedictine monk and the Director of The World Community for Christian Meditation (

Rev Grace Clunie, Director of The Centre for Celtic Spirituality, Armagh, and author of ‘Sacred Living’ will be assisting Fr Laurence with the retreat.

The Weekend costs £125 for a shared room and £145 for a single room.

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Click here for BOOKING FORM

Click here for Timetable

Click here for Flyer A5

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God in All Seasons: New Year Blessing

This reflection is a part of our blog series. During the month of December we will be looking at reflections and prayers with the theme of CHRIST WITH US. To learn more about this year’s series, click here


A blessing from Ray Simpson’s book Celtic Blessings: Prayers for Everyday Life

God bless me to this year

Never vouchsafed to me before.

It is to bless your own presence

that you have given me this moment, O Lord.

Bless to me my eye

And everything it shall see

Bless to me my neighbor

May my neighbor be a blessing to me.

Bless to me my household

and all my dear ones

Bless to me my work and all that belongs

to your provision.

Give to me a clean heart

That I may not need to hide from you

One moment of this new year.


A message from Dermot Jameson of St Bronagh’s School of Celtic Studies

Dear Pilgrims,

Here’s wishing you a very Happy New Year. May it be a prosperous one for you and also for St. Bronagh’s School of Celtic Studies, now entering its 13th year.
Our Imbolg meeting will be held on Saturday February 2nd, in the Lecture
Hall, Rostrevor, when we welcome two very interesting speakers.

Anthony Murphy, whose subject will be “The Story of Ireland’s Ancient Astronomers.” In the prelude to his book “Island of the Setting Sun” he writes “As investigation of this awe-inspiring civilisation of people continues on many levels, evidence is emerging that significant archaeological sites dating from deep in prehistory are linked – not just through mythology, archaeology and cosmology – but through an arrangement of complex, and in some cases astonishing, alignments. Some of these alignments of ancient sites
stretch from one side of Ireland to another”. For more information turn to his website, which receives 2,500 visitors daily!

Our afternoon speaker is Desi Maxwell, well known for his Xplorations teaching ministry, also as a tour guide leader. His website is and his theme will be Holy, Wholey, Holy”.

Programme 2nd February 2013

Location: Lecture Hall, Rostrevor
10.30.a.m. Coffee & Registration.
11.a.m. Mr. Anthony Murphy.
1.p.m. Soup & Sandwiches in the Kilbroney Inn.
2.30.p.m. Mr. Desi Maxwell.

Cost for the day will be £10.00 (including lunch). Payable at the door. We do hope you will be able to be with us. In order to give us some idea of numbers please let Pat Doran know (phone 417 39644) or

*Our pilgrimage this year will be to Sligo. May 3rd – 6th. More details later.*

Christ With Us: Celebrating the Incarnation

This reflection is a part of our blog series. During the month of December we will be looking at reflections and prayers with the theme of CHRIST WITH US. To learn more about this year’s series, click here

* * *
An excerpt from Mary C. Earle’s article “A Celtic Christmas: Celebrating the Sacred in All Creation


The wonder of the Incarnation is that in Jesus we are told that God and humanity are meant for each other. We discover that God loves bodies, God plays with matter, God speaks to us through quarks and atoms and molecules, through blood and lymph and bone. Through every human race and culture. The Christian story tells us that God chooses to be human, chooses to know human life from the moment of conception to the suffering of death. In Jesus, God knows intimately what it is to be a toddler, to have a stomachache, to feel the rain and wind, to be betrayed and forsaken, to die. Incarnation is about God choosing to be one of us, so that we might become communities of compassion, mercy, courage, justice, care, God’s embodied presence here and now.

Historically, at this time of the year, the peoples of the Celtic lands (Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Brittany, Cornwall, Isle of Man, Galicia) marked the natural rhythm as autumn turned to winter. This was a time for watching for the light’s return, even in the midst of darkness. This was a time for pondering endings and beginnings. As Christianity came to these lands, perhaps as early as the first century, there was a ready embracing of the proclamation that Jesus was the Son of God. As far as we can tell, the pre-Christian religious practices of the Celtic peoples were inclined to celebrate the natural world as shot through with divine presence. For them, a faith tradition that celebrated the divine becoming human was plausible, welcome and true. Incarnation was not a stumbling block as it was to the Greeks. This faith that had a central story of a man who came from God and returned to God, a man who was God’s Son, did not seem so far-fetched to the Celtic mind.

The first time I went to Wales in 1994, Patrick Thomas, Welsh author and Anglican priest, told us that in every Welsh nativity scene, a washerwoman accompanies Mary, Joseph and Jesus at the manger. For the Welsh tradition, if Jesus isn’t born daily into the common household, then there’s really no point of celebrating the birth at Bethlehem. Jesus’ birth, singular as it is, also shows us the sacredness of each child, knit together in the mother’s womb by God’s own Spirit. Jesus’ birth reminds us that each household is dear to God.

Christ With Us: When Facing Tragedy

The Caim Prayer

Circle me Lord

Keep protection near

And danger afar


Circle me Lord

Keep hope within

Keep doubt without


Circle me Lord

Keep light near

And darkness afar


Circle me Lord

Keep peace within

Keep evil without