Brigidine Sisters (CSB)

St Brigid

Brigid was born to a Christian slave girl named Brocessa and a wealthy pagan chieftain named Dubhthach. After Brigid was born, her mother was sold to a Druid in Connaught, which was several mountains away from where Brigid stayed with her father.Brigid set off to find her mother, and when she found her she asked for her freedom, and got it.

Brigid founded an abbey at Kildare, site helped it grow into a real community, with priests and artists and poets and scholars living together. It grew large enough to be a town with its own bishop. But Brigid dill mot stay. She went off in her chariot to all the corners of Ireland, telling about Christ and making people simile at her flaring.

Bishop Delany and The Brigidine Congregation

Daniel Delany, an Irish Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin founded tile Brigidines. His life and spirit in a few brief words is captured in the story of the bones.

  • The Wish bone – to dream – to have a vision for the future;
  • The Backbone – to have the courage, the conviction to make our dream a reality;
  • The Funny bone – to be able to see the humour in our failures and to press on despite tile inevitable disappointments.

Bishop Daniel Delany – the Founder – certainly had the wish bone. He lived at a very difficult time in Irish history – a time of great religious persecution – the only schools were hedge schools (where a local learned man gathered a little group of boys in tile shade of a hedge). Yet Daniel had a vision of a better Ireland.

He had the backbone – the faith and courage to make his dream a reality. He felt that education was a solution to bringing about his vision of a better future. So he established a group of women and men who would dedicate themselves completely to God and to the mission of education. In 1807 he brought together six young women from his parish of Tullow and gave then the title Sisters of St. Brigid or Brigidines after Brigid who is believe to have been tile first Irish sister back in the time of St. Patrick. The following year 1808 he founded the Patrician Brothers.

I think we can also say that Daniel Delany had the funny bone. An incident is recorded that a local lady who could see in over the high convent wall (called the enclosure in those (lays) watched the young novices at recreation. Well it seerns that the novices might have been practising for membership of ‘Tile Kilgore Highkickers’ because this lady complained to the Bishop that they were Jumping around too much. lie replied: “Madam, I won’t worry until they limit) over the wall)” Daniel Delany is always described as a man who was strong yet gentle. Our crest which is used by all Brigidines convents, schools and colleges throughout file world is based on the Delany family crest with the addition of the St. Brigid’s Cross and the lamp of learning. Our motto is “Fortiter et Suaviter” – translated “Strength and Gentleness”. This may sound somewhat like a riddle to you but it has been said that “Nothing is as strong as gentleness, nothing as gentle as real strength”; or another way of saying it might be ‘it is only the person who is truly strong who can dare to he gentle’.

Find out more about the Brigidine Sisters and their work today.