22nd March - Feast of St. Darerca

Written by Anne Newman Monday 18th March 2019

Saint Darerca is said to be the sister of St Patrick and she is the patroness of Valentia Island. I can find no stories told about her, just some articles saying she was mother of many other Irish saints.

This Discover The World video of Valentia Island can be found on YouTube.

According to The Catholic Encyclopedia, she is believed to have had seventeen sons and two daughters by two husbands. Her first husband was Restitutus the Lombard, after whose death she married Chonas the Briton.

All of her sons became bishops. Furthermore, many of these bishops are regarded as saints, such as Saint Mel of Ardagh, Saint Rioc of Inisboffin, Saint Muinis of Forgney, and Saint Maelchu.

By Restitutus, Darerca was mother of St Sechnall of Dunshaughlin; St. Nectan of Killunche, and of Fennor (near Slane); of St. Auxilius of Killossey (near Naas, County Kildare); of St. Diarmuid of Druim-corcortri (near Navan); of Dabonna, Mogornon, Drioc, Luguat, and Coemed Maccu Baird (theLombard) of Cloonshaneville, near Frenchpark, County Roscommon.

Four other sons are assigned her by old Irish writers, namely St. Crummin of Lecua, St.Miduu, St. Carantoc, and St. Maceaith.

Both of her daughters became saints too, St. Eiche of Kilglass and St. Lalloc of Senlis.

However, little is truly known about Patrick's sisters, and many traditions differ as to the exact details of who they were and what they did.

The Irish folklore collection mentions another sister, St. Lupita.

I also found this article which says Patrick had five sisters:

It does mention that maybe ‘sisters’ refer to women who were part of Patrick’s

“Irish mission and whose status as spiritual sisters was transformed into that of biological sisters by later writers.”

further reading

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Anne is sharing a series of events throughout the year - you can find them listed by clicking to the link Other Notable Dates and Festivals.