The Brigid of Faughart Festival returns this year with a mixture of in person and online events as the organisers invites people to join in the celebration of Brigid, Goddess and Saint around her feast day Lá Fhéile Bhride on February 1st, the festival of Imbolc as winter loses its grip and signs of Spring appear.
“This year we are offering a combination of in person and online events, which reflects Brigid’s capacity to always find a creative way to resolve an issue,” says Dolores Whelan, one of the organisers.
The annual pilgrimage walk takes place on Sunday January 30th at from Sally Cox’s house on Mount Avenue, Dundalk to Faughart Shrine.
The walk passes through Fatima, Toberona and other townlands to Faughart. Walkers are asked to meet ten minutes before the start of the walk at 11am.
There will also be a guided tour of the sacred sites of Faughart Shrine on Sunday afternoon at 2.30pm.
Other traditional ways to celebrate Brigid’s Day include leaving a piece of cloth known as Brat Bhride, outside on the Eve of Brigid’s day so that Brigid can bless it as she wanders through the land. Tradition says that this cloth can then be used for healing
There will be a demonstration on how to make a Saint Brigid’s cross from rushes by R oisin Cotter which can be viewed on the festival wevsite, wwwbrigidoffaughart.ie, from Tuesday January 25th.
On St Bridid’s Day itself, Tuesday February 1st, the Brigid of Faughart Festival in association with An Táin Arts Centre in Dundalk will host ‘Cruinniú Lá Fhéile Bhríde – Gathering under Brigid’s Mantle’ from An Tain Arts Centre.
This on-line event will celebrate Brigid and her importance within the soul consciousness of Ireland.
“We look forward to presenting a joyful evening of music, art, meditations and talks to celebrate Brigid’s Day, and the return of her vibrant energy of springtime and new beginning,” said Dolores. “We trust that this event will bring much needed hope and courage into our world today.”
Contributors on the night will include soprano Eve Bourton and harpist Chu Chung, singers Ann Mc Donald and Deirdre Ni Chinneide.
There will also be uplifting poetry from Dundalk writers group and from Siobhan Mac Mahon, along with inspiring words from Phyllida Anam Aire and Dolores Whelan, stories of Brigid from Ruth Marshall and guided mediation with intuitive coach Geraldine Whelan O Meara.
“We are delighted to be working with the Brigid of Faughart festival again this year,” says Paul Hayes, Director An Tain Arts Centre. “We are really excited to be hosting their online celebration of Brigid. Although it is a very challenging time for the arts, events such as these can reach a lot more people internationally.’
“We hope that many of the people who read this piece will join us on Tuesday night La Fhéile to celebrate Brigid’s Day and the coming of spring,” adds Dolores.
Tickets for this concert are €10 plus €1.50 booking fee and can be purchased from An Táin Arts Centre box office on 042 933 2332 and online at www.antain.ie. Once the ticket is bought the event can be viewed and enjoyed until the February 8th.
Tickets for the walk and guided tour can be booked on the Brigid of Faughart festival website, wwwbrigidoffaughart.ie