Wednesday in the Fifth Week of Lent
March 29, 2023

Our online Lenten meditation for today focuses on the life and witness of Saint Aidan, apostle to the English. Aidan was an Irish monk who joined the community founded by Saint Columba on the island of Iona. In 631 he was chosen to lead the mission to the largest English kingdom of Northumbria, at the request of its new young king, Oswald. A man of the people who would rather give away fine things to those in need rather than adorn himself in the church’s frippery, Aidan eschewed the trappings of a bishop’s status, walked everywhere (most bishops rode on horseback), and led an ascetic life of constant meditation on scripture. He established a mission monastery outpost at Lindisfarne, and the first school for English boys. He used gifts of money to help the poor or to buy slaves their freedom. Aidan’s mission spread very fast and many clergy found their hearts warmed by his inspiring example. Clergy and monks poured in from Ireland and elsewhere to help establish new monastic churches and pastor the local villages.


Holy Spirit,
Inspire pastors and those who give care to others,
That they may tend those they care for with kindness and grace,
After the pattern of Aidan,
With gentleness, generosity, and strength.
Set the people free by love, to love others in your Name.