Now, I’m not Catholic or Irish, but I married an Irishman and have always been fascinated by Ireland. I guess you can attribute that to watching John Wayne in “A Quiet Man” way too many times when I was young. Anyway, my Mom has been to Ireland two times and Katie has been once. I hope John and I can go some day.
I like the symbolism in many of the Irish traditions. I have one lovely Aran Stitch wool sweater that I love and need to memorize what all the stitches mean. I have another one, different style, on order. I have a few pieces of Celtic Knot jewelry and like that the knot has no beginning or end and that there are three pieces to it to symbolize the Trinity. I find it interesting that a man chose to use a 3 leaf clover – a shamrock – to teach children about the Trinity and that this man’s name was Patrick. I am just learning about all the symbolism of the Claddagh. My oldest niece, Erin – good Irish name eh? – has a Claddagh ring. According to the legend it is a familiar story…Boy meets girl – they fall in love – he goes on a journey – girl waits for boy – boy returns – gives girl a ring (the first Gold Galway Claddagh) which is “…a symbol of their enduring love. Two hands to represent their friendship, the crown to signify their loyalty and lasting fidelity, and the sign of the heart to symbolise their eternal love for each other.” Depending on how the ring is worn it can symbolize looking for friendship, single, engaged, or married. Then there is the Celtic Cross – “the circle of the Celtic Cross is a symbol of eternity that emphasizes the endless ness of God’s love as shown through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.”
I tend to lean towards being contemporary in my worship of the Lord. I appreciate the old hymns, but enjoy the application of many of the new choruses and the freshness they bring to my walk with the Lord. I find it odd that I also enjoy the symbolism in the Irish things I mentioned. John’s reading seems to indicate that today’s generation is looking for a mix of contemporary with many of the traditions of the church throughout history. Maybe I’m just ahead of myself with fitting in…Hahaha…anyway – enough rambling…have a great day!