That the Race May Not Attain unto Paradise

St. Brigid.

Once upon a time Brigid went to watch over a certain virgin, namely, Brigid, the daughter of Congaile, who used to work many miracles.  And when Brigid and her virgins were at supper, Brigid paused in the middle of the meal, and she said to a certain virgin: “Make thou Christ’s cross over thy face and over thine eyes that thou mayest see what I see.”

So then the virgin beheld Satan beside the table with his head down and his feet up, his smoke and his flame out of his gullet and out of his nostrils.  Said Brigid to the demon that he should answer her:

“I cannot, O nun, be without conversing with thee, for thou keepest God’s commandments and thou art compassionate to God’s poor and to His family.”

“Tell us,” saith Brigid, “why thou art hurtful in thy deeds to the human race?”

Said the demon: “That the race may not attain unto Paradise.”

Said Brigid to the demon: “Wherefore hast thou come to us among our nuns?”

“A certain pious virgin is here,” saith the demon, “and in her company am I.”

Said Brigid to the virgin: “Put Christ’s cross over thine eyes.”  And the virgin beheld at once the hideous monster there, and great fear seized the virgin when she beheld the demon.

“Wherefore shunnest thou,” said Brigid, “the fosterling whom thou hast been cherishing (?) for long seasons?”

Then the virgin repented, and she was healed of the devil of gluttony and lust that had dwelt in her company.

— From an anonymous Life of St. Brigid.

Published by Christian Clay Columba Campbell

Christian Clay Columba Campbell is a Roman Catholic of the Anglican Use. As Senior Warden of the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Orlando, FL), he organised the process by which the parish accepted the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, petitioning to join the Catholic Church. The Anglican Cathedral is now the Church of the Incarnation in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. Personal queries should be directed to me at eccentricbliss dot com.

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