We left Dublin Saturday morning and drove through the midlands to the west coast for a wedding of family of friends. With it’s craggy mountains, sandy beaches and network of lakes laced together, Connemara exemplifies the peaceful solitude and rugged beauty of The West of Ireland.
On Sunday we boarded a bus, with all of the other wedding guests, for over an hour treak to the Ballintubber Abbey in County Mayo. Talk about a destination wedding, this 800 year old abbey was quite impressive. Ballintubber takes its name from St. Patrick-Baile tobair Phádraig – the townland of St Patrick’s well, where Patrick baptized his converts. Did you know that as a boy of fourteen or so, Patrick was captured during a raiding party and taken to Ireland, orginally from Scotland, as a slave to herd and tend sheep. This was in the days of the Druids and pagans and therefore he took their language and practices. He turned to God as a child and prayed until he escaped in his twenties and returned to Scotland, studied for the priesthood, was eventually ordained a Bishop. He then returned to Ireland where he preached and converted all of Ireland for the next 40 years! They say that he drove all of the snakes out of Ireland also!