Photo courtesy of Dave Wilkie, Edinburgh.

St. Sléibine Feast Day.

March 2 is the feast day of St. Sléibine. I'm in no way an expert on Catholic saints or Scotish/Irish history-- the following information was all gleaned from the internet, so take it with a grain of salt.

Sléibine was the abbot of Iona from A.D. 752-767; Iona is a tiny island in the Inner Hebrides of Scotland. Why is a Scottish abbot an Irish saint? The abbot of Iona "was one of the most prestigious clerical positions in Dark Age Europe, and was visited by kings and bishops of the Picts, Franks and English." Iona was "one of the oldest and most important religious centres in Western Europe, Iona Abbey was a focal point for the spread of Christianity throughout Scotland..." It's tough to find Iona on most maps of Scotland. If you find the Isle of Mull, it's just west of the southwestern tip of the island. If you're into medieval architecture, from the photos online it looks like a beautiful place to visit.

But back to St. Sléibine. One web page listing the abbots of Iona through the ages says "752-767 Sléibine. Was in Ireland in 754." I'd guess that he wasn't there "on holiday" and that's the basis for his becoming an Irish saint.

So in this 1255th(!) anniversary year of Sléibine's visit to Ireland, we salute our Slavin/Slevin/Slaven/etc. saint and his feast day.

Copyright © 2009 Larry Slavens. All rights reserved.