Brigid in Ceremony
This is the season of Brigid, she who protects our hearth and home. We honour her and thank her for keeping us warm. Great Lady, bless us and protect us in your name.
Dearest Brigid, we open all aspects of our lives to receive your guidance, courage and protection. we ask that you assist us in finding balance ease and comfort in the choice we are making so that it reflects only our highest good at all times. Thank you for your assistance and we let go of any negative feelings of fear or self sabotaging and open gently to the guidance you give us. So be It and So It Is.
(Adapted from a traditional Irish custom of welcoming Brigit and used at 2009 Imbolc celebration at Fourknocks)
Aparticipant embodying Brigit and carrying the Cailleach doll walked around the outside of the cairn three times, each time, passing the door and knocking to come in.
The group inside were listening to stories about Brigit and when the knocking occurred called out,
“Taristeach a Bríd agus tabhair duinn do bheannachtaí” (Come in Brigit and give us your blessings)
On the third round Brigit answered,
“Gabhaigíar bhur nglúine, foscailigí bhur súile, agus ligigí isteach Bríd” (Get down on your knees, open your eyes and let Brigit in)
Those inside answered,
“Sédobheatha, Sédo bheatha, Sédo bheatha” (You are welcome, you are welcome, you are welcome)
The human Cailleach then entered removing her skeletal face and black cloak, revealing the bright clothes of the fresh Spring personification of Brigit.
Our Bridóg (shared at several gatherings) removes the black cape and skeletal face revealing her alter ego of the virgin; pure, inspirational and full of promise of rebirth and restoration.
Symbolism for a centre
In the photo opposite you will find....
Brigit patron of Fire in the Hearth (candles),
the brave and bold leader of Spring (snowdrops),
fertility (polished egg),
Christian and pre-Christian (cross)
and healing (Bhrat Bríde).
St. Brigid Psalm - origin unknown
Brigid, you were a woman of peace, you brought harmony where there was conflict. You brought light to the darkness. You brought hope to the downcast. May the mantle of your peace cover those who are troubled and anxious, and may peace be firmly rooted in our hearts and in our world.
Inspire us to act justly and to reverence all God has made. Brigid you were a voice for the wounded and the weary. Strengthen what is weak within us. Calm us into a quietness that heals and listens. May we grow each day into greater wholeness in mind, body and spirit. Amen
– the maiden goddess is symbolised by the purity and innocence of white dew bejewelled snowdrops, gentle and apparently fragile these little plants are tough and bold bursting through the frozen ground, the first stirrings of Spring.
- The Bhrat was left out on the eve of St. Bridgit where tradition says she passes over the country leaving her healing essence behind in the dew. The Bhrat is then used to treat illness over the following year and shared during the year when you want to add that energy to your intentions.
Symbolism for Brigid's cloak
Brigid's cloak was made with intuition and instinct. It is veil like. Coincidentally, the gathering was held on St. Mel's day and it was St. Mel that 'veiled' Brigid when she was ordained. The sheep's wool was gathered from Tara and Loughcrew - Sliabh na Callaigh - and this is, of course, lambing time.
Woven in the veil fabric is birch bark. This came from a birch tree in RTE grounds in Dublin - RTE has Brigid's cross as a logo. Traditions suggest that birch bark represents new beginnings, poetry and inspiration. The red felt pieces symbolise Brigid in her smith aspect, representing the red hot hearth and the perpetual sacred flame at Kildare. Strips of red felt from Kildare were gifted at the opening of Slí an Chroí (Way of the Heart) and was put out on Brigid's Eve as a Bhrat Bhride.
The blue tie reminds us of St. Brigid's well, and the healing waters of purification. One small swan's feather represents the connections suggested between Fourknocks and the constellation of the Swan, that travels on the Milky Way. Swan is said to be the dreamkeeper.
Brigid, as you dispense healing and wholeness to those who make heart-contact with you, we ask that, as a Triple Goddess you gently enfolds our three aspects, mind, body, spirit, in your pure and perfect light. May we experience being taken into the folds of your radiant garments. We share with you unsurpassed love and reverence, dear Brigid of the Mantle.
Doorway - Brigid was born on the threshold
Jean had a doorway made which referred to
Brigid who was said to have been born in the thresh-hold of her family
home – symbolising how she was of this world as well as the Divine
Each person passed through this doorway to be welcomed
by other members of the group and the cloak which adorned the frame was
unfurled and held by all as some beautuful music inspired by Brigid was
If working individually you can use a doorway in your home as your symbolic transition place.
Information on Brigid's Cross can be found if you click here for Join In - Use of Crafts
A suggestion for linking to Brigid using candles in a ceremony is available here - Join In - Use of Candles
Colours connected to Brigid are listed in the article 'Colour' found by clicking here