While undoubtedly St Patrick is Ireland’s primary and most renowned patron saint, St Brigid and St Colmcille both also boast the title.
Important for farmers, St Brigid is the patron saint for livestock and dairy production, as well as poetry, learning, healing, protection and blacksmithing.
St Brigid’s Day is fast approaching on 1 February, the beginning of spring.
There are many traditions associated with Ireland’s only female patron saint, known for her creativity and advocacy for the poor.
The most commonly associated tradition with St Brigid’s Day is the making of the cross, which you can learn how to do here.
A lesser known tradition is that of the Biddy in Kerry, a musical phenomenon.
If you are looking to find out how St Brigid’s Day is being celebrated around the country, look no further.
Kildare is the county most associated with St Brigid; it’s where she founded many convents and monasteries. So it’s fitting the Lily Whites have a week-long festival planned, Féile Bríde.
On the eve of St Brigid’s Day, the Hill of Allen will be illuminated to honour the patron saint. There will also be guided walks on the Curragh plains and in-person and online workshops on the traditions and customs associated with St Brigid. More information is available here.
Department of Foreign Affairs
This is the Department of Foreign Affairs’ fifth year hosting global celebrations for St Brigid’s Day.
There will be a programme of over 75 online and in-person events around the globe and across Ireland celebrating leadership, creativity and the talent of women from Tuesday 1 February.
Visit the Mansion House in Dublin to see Brigid, Goddess of Fire by illustrator Holly Pereira projected on the walls. A full list of events can be found here.
St Patrick Centre, Downpatrick
The St Patrick Centre, Downpatrick, Co Down, will host a special event as part of this year’s St Brigid’s Day celebrations.
‘Brigid Saint or Goddess’ will be hosted from 2pm to 4pm on Tuesday 1 February, Saturday 26 February and Sunday 20 March.
Each event will include a demonstration of St Brigid’s cross making by the aptly named Brigid Watson, along with an exhibition and storytelling of the life of St Brigid and her links to the goddess of the same name.
During the experience guests will have the opportunity to make their own cross. More information is available here.