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St Columba


















St Fillan's Cave

Saintly Miracles

Saint Columba's Miracles
When, in 1412, the Earl of Douglas thrice essayed to sail out to sea, and was thrice driven back by adverse gales, he at last made a pilgrimage to the holy isle of Aemonia (lnchcolm), presented an offering to Columba, and forthwith the Saint sped him with fair winds to Flanders and home again.

When towards the winter of 1421, a boat was sent on a Sunday to bring off to the monastery from the mainland some house provisions and barrels of beer brewed at Bernhill, and the crew, exhilarated with liquor, upset the barge. Sir Peter the Canon, who, with five others, was thrown into the water, fervently and unceasingly invoked the aid of Columba, and the saint appeared in person to him, and kept Sir Peter afloat for an hour and a half by the help of a truss of tow till the boat of Portevin picked up him and two others.

When, in 1385, the crew of an English vessel robbed the island, and tried to burn the church, St. Columba, in answer to the earnest prayers of those who, on the neighbouring shore, saw the danger of the sacred edifice, suddenly shifted round the wind and quenched the flames, while the chief of the incendiaries was, within a few hours afterwards, struck with madness, and forty of his comrades drowned.

When, in 1335, an English fleet ravaged the shores of the Forth, and one of their largest ships was carrying off from Inchcolm an image of Columba and a store of plunder, there sprung up such a furious tempest around the vessel immediately after she set sail, that she drifted helplessly and hopelessly towards the neighbouring island of Inchkeith, and was threatened with destruction on the rocks there till the crew implored pardon of Columba, vowed to him restitution of their spoils, and a suitable offering of gold and silver, and then they instantly and unexpectedly were lodged safe in port.

When, in 1336, some English pirates robbed the church at Dollar, which had been some time previously repaired and richly decorated by an Abbot of Aemonia, and while they were, with their sacrilegious booty, sailing triumphantly, and with music on board, dowh the Forth, under a favouring and gentle west wind, in the twinkling of an eye and exactly opposite the abbey of Inchcolm, they
sank to the bottom like a stone.

Saint Fillan was born in the shire of Fife, in the seventh century; his father Feriath was a nobleman, and his mother’s name was Kentigerna. At his birth he appeared like a monster, having something in his mouth like a stone; upon which his father ordered him privately to be drowned, in an adjacent loch: but the boy being preserved by the administration of angels, a holy Bishop, called Ibarus, coming accidentally by, took up the child, and having baptized him, caused bring him up in all virtue and literature, in the monastery of Pittenweem, and at length, upon the death of the Abbot he was chosen in his place. “In this monastery that he might more easily labour in divine contemplation, he secretly constructed a cell not far from the cloister, in which, on a certain night, while the brethren of the monastery announced by a little servant that supper was ready, the servant kneeling and peeping through a chink in that cell to see what was taking place, saw the blessed Faclantis writing in the dark, with his left hand affording a clear light to his right hand. The servant, wondering at this occurrence, straightway returned to the brethren and told it.
“But blessed Faelanus having had this made known to him supernaturally, and being angry with the servant that had revealed his secret, by divine permission a certain crane, which was domesticated in the monastery, pecked out the eye of the servant and blinded him; but the blessed Faelanus, moved with compassion, and at the instance and supplication of the brotherhood straightway restored the eye of the servant.

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