Holy Week with St Brendan

Well here we are… its holy week and Brendan and company sight land once more. As we should have expected on Maundy Thursday they return to the Isle of their Steward for the second time. As this is the second time Brendan and company has passed holy week and Easter on their voyage the Navigatio does not elaborate on the details as much. All phases of their journey through holy week and Easter reflect the life of Christ. The steward who meets them on Maundy Thursday lives out the steps of the Feast of the Last Supper, washing their feet and providing them with a banquet. They celebrate the somber rites of Good Friday with him. On the morning of Holy Saturday they once again embark from the Isle of the Steward now knowing they will meet the great fish. As in the previous year they find the ‘island’ with the cauldron they left the year before but know that they are on the back of the great fish. I think it is important to stress that the Latin text calls it a fish not a whale. The fish is the symbol of Christ and it is Christ who will carry them on his back during the darkest day of the year, Holy Saturday, while Christ is in the tomb. Here the pass the Easter Vigil. On Easter morning they will set sail again leaving the fish behind as they proceed to the Isle of the Birds, who we know from their previous visit are the manifestation of angels who continually sing praises to God throughout Eastertide. So I will leave you here until the arrival of Eastertide…

 

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