Aug 6, 2010

A Legend About St. Columcille

As I promised on Monday, I'm going to share one of my favorite legends about one of the three patron saints of Ireland, St. Columcille.

Better known by his Latin name, St. Columba, he was the founder of Iona. He is also the subject of the first Loch Ness monster sighting, way back in the 6th century!

In Scotland, he was on a journey with some of his followers. They came upon a riverbank where a crowd of people stood around a body. The man, they said, had just been killed by a monster in the river (the Loch Ness River that feeds the Loch Ness, the now famous lake in Scotland.) St. Columcille needed to get to the other side of the river. There was a boat, but it was on the other side. He ordered one of his followers to jump into the river, swim to the other side and get the boat, and then bring it back to him and the others. Would you have done that? I mean there was a dead man who had just killed in that river! But this man obeyed. He was about halfway across when a giant monster rose out of the water. The creature was just about to snatch the poor man when St. Columcille held up his hand and said, "In the name of God, stop right there."

The monster froze.

"Now, go back down to the bottom. You will never leave this place again."

The monster obeyed and sank back to the bottom of the river. The man swam across, got the boat, brought it back, and St. Columcille and his fellow monks went on their merry way.

What an impression that must have made on the folks watching all this. What a powerful God this man followed. Maybe they should follow Him too.

This story appears in a late 8th century Irish manuscript. Now you can impress your friends about the "real" story of the Loch Ness monster!

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