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Saint Flannan

Patron Saint of Killaloe, Ireland


© José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro | CC BY-SA 4.0

Bishop (Seventh Century)

His life

+ Flannán mac Toirrdelbaig was the son of an Irish chieftan.

+ As a young man, he became a monk in a small but important monastery in Killaloe. Known as a great preacher, it is recorded that he later became the community’s abbot.

+ During a pilgrimage to Rome, Pope John IV consecrated him as the first bishop of Killaloe. As a missionary-bishop, he preached throughout the Hebrides.

+ Saint Flannan died in the seventh century and devotion to him was officially confirmed by Pope Leo XIII in 1902. He is honored as the patron saint of Killaloe and his commemoration is included in the liturgical calendar for Ireland.

For prayer and reflection

O sacred Lord of ancient Israel, who showed yourself to Moses in the burning bush, who gave him the holy law on Sinai mountain: come, stretch out your mighty hand to set us free.—Magnificat Antiphon for December 18

Spiritual bonus

On this day, the Church remembers the Prophet Malachi. Recognized as the last of the “Minor Prophets,” his writings—which date to the fifth century before Christ—he lived and worked during the time of the Ezra and Nehemiah and the reconstruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. As the introduction to the Book of Malachi in the New American Bible states, “He shows us attitude and behaviors characteristic of the Jewish community a few generations after the end of he Babylonian exile, and describes God’s response.”


Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who are weighed down from of old
by slavery beneath the yoke of sin,
may be set free by the newness
of the long-awaited Nativity
of your Only Begotten Son.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

(Collect for the Mass of December 18)

Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.

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