Thursday, November 25, 2004

Tending Her Flame

sketch by Daughter of the Flame
Hawthorne, in Australia

to our knowledge there are three groups actively tending Brigit's perpetual flame at present, after a hiatus of a few hundred years. the flame of the Goddess had burned for no one-knows-how-long in Cill Dara--Kildare, Ireland--the Cell of the Oak. as Christianity took root the Goddess was replaced by the Saint, Her flame tended instead by nuns, who kept it for hundreds of years.

in 1993, on the same day--Brigit's Feast of 1 February--a group of Catholic Brigidine nuns and a largely Pagan group of women, unaware of the others' activities, relit Her perpetual flame in Ireland and in Canada. the second group, the Daughters of the Flame, live in many areas of the globe and take turns tending the flame every 20 days. the Catholic sisters have groups in several countries besides Ireland, as well.

some years later, a member of the Daughters of the Flame created Ord Brighideach, a solely online group that would make shifts available to women and men and in great numbers.

if you know of other groups who tend Brigit's perpetual flame, we would love to hear of them. please leave a comment at the end of this posting.

the Brigidine sisters in Ireland don't have a website, but can be contacted at this address:

14 Dara Park,
Kildare, Ireland

you may wish to join their lay group or come on Imbolc for the great festival of Brighid each February. their sisters in Australia can be found at:

the Daughters of the Flame can be found at:

and Ord Brighideach's site is:


Black Antler said...

can you come over and play with us? we do not have your email.

Mael Brigde said...

sorry! didn't notice this comment till now? just rushing through to do an Imbolc posting, but we will check you out asap!

Anonymous said...

I've been curious for years about "Feile Bríde," the great festival of Brighid that happens at the end of January in Kildare Ireland. So here are a few websites I discovered in my search. Someday, I will make a pilgrimage to this festival despite the chill of that land in late winter. I am a child of Imbolc (born just a few days before Brighid's feast), so I have felt a great connection to her, and through her to my Celtic ancestry.

a description of Feile Bríde 2005
Solas Bríde, a website for the pilgrimage centre founded by the Brigidine Sisters(Catholic Nuns who tend Brighid's Flame and promote peace and justice)
There is a wonderful description of a personal pilgrimage to Kildare and the Feile Bríde festival in issue #20 of PanGaia Magazine. The full text of the article is not currently online, but you can order back issues at their site.

A Photographic Tour of Kildare Cathedral

I also found a fascinating interview with a Brigidine Nun, Sister Mary Minehan, about her relationship with St. Brigit and work.

Mael Brigde said...

Many thanks for this, Anonymous! I will post it as a separate entry.

Anonymous said...

Tuatha De Brighid has a flamekeeping group

So does ADF

I tend with both of them, as well as the