In the eye of fire your swirl of spirit burns,
heats my soul, blazes with love. I step to the
threshold, move out of my own way to watch
geese soar into the early eve’s welkin purpled
in cold that is not yet spring ready. In your
fire-flamed breath I watch my rise, a waltz in
sky’s opening. You called a whispered welcome,
a generous invitation. I step aside, my fear
grounded. I answer, bare feet push
against earth’s grip to join in your dance.
I had the pleasure of meeting a saint, a goddess, unknown to me only a few weeks ago. Fr. Scott Jenkins asked me to do the homily for our monthly Celtic mass as St. Brigid of Kildare. The mass would take place on February 1, Brigid’s feast day and Imbolc.
It was a whirlwind three weeks. Research, writing a script, addition of a baptism at the mass (oh, so appropriate!), making a costume, rehearsing, and regular life chores of a first grade teacher, wife, and caregiver.
It was well worth it.
The homily was a transforming experience for me. My church, A Church of the Holy Family, is a place of loving and wonderful people who accept all. We are part of the Ecumenical Catholic Communion (ECC). I am only a member for slightly over a year, but have been embraced and my gift of writing and acting has been encouraged and honored. I cannot have found a more welcoming home.
Also, I found Brigid, a saint and goddess I will treasure. I was lucky to have gone on a private silent retreat during this time at the Sacred Heart Jesuit Retreat House allowing me time to explore Brigid and Celtic spirituality in some depth. I find that Brigid is leading me in a discernment process right now. I wake to her blessings each day.
And I not only discovered Brigid, but was also connected to an artist through a dear friend, C.J. Prince, a writer who lives in Bellingham, Washington. The artist, Joanna Powell Colbert, was creating this new portrait of Brigid at the same time I was creating the homily. A print of Ms. Powell Colbert’s Brigid’s Fire now resides on my mediation altar. Please visit her site to see Brigid’s Fire, other beautiful work, and a blessing for Imbolc, the beginning of spring.
It is hard to believe all of this happened in a few short weeks. It is the beginning of what I hope to be a good journey.