Sunday, August 30, 2009

First prayer ever written by a woman!

This is perhaps one of the first prayers written by and for women. It is taken from an Anglo-Saxon source and found in the Nunnaminster Manuscript and written around AD 900 by a nun in a Winchester convent. I found it in my local convent. What an amazing monastic treasure!

On the Ears

O God, my Lord,


in the moment of death,

was deaf to my wretchedness

but with ears open to the inward will

of your Father’s way.

I give you thanks,

and in so doing,

I ask forgiveness for these ears

whose hearing has been polluted

by the evil things that they have heard.

I pray

that never might I have to hear

in the day that will come,

the judge’s sentence

equal to the faults that I have heaped up,

from the fire of your love,

Lord Jesus Christ,


(An Anglo-Saxon Passion – David Scott SPCK 1999)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Ancient Celtic Hospitality Rune

I love this ancient Celtic rune, which I mentioned in Celtic Treasure. I've seen it quoted in many retreat houses across the country. It's a wonderfully warm welcoming poem and a timely reminder to be thankful for all God has given us:

We saw a stranger yesterday
We put food in the eating place,
Drink in the drinking place,
Music in the listening place,
And with the sacred name of the triune God
He blessed us and our house,
our cattle and our dear ones.
As the lark says in our song:
Often, often, often goes the Christ
In the stranger's guise.
(Taken from p.70 Celtic Treasure)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Celtic Hospitality

I love it when readers write to me and tell me about their favourite poems or sections from my books. When I write them, I'm never sure which parts will 'speak' to people. Patty Facebooked me to tell me how much she was enjoying the section on hospitality. The Celtic concept of hospitality is a very biblical one - to be God's loving welcome to the stranger. Tomorrow, I'll share with you one of my favourite Celtic hospitality runes which picks up on this theme.

Patty also mentioned that she loved my poem. So I thought I'd share that poem with you. It's based on a shape poem. I love writing shape poems because I'm such a visual writer. Shape poems have an immediacy and simplicity too. I'd love you to send me any shape poems you've written.

Love of God
Help me to be kind
To see the needs of the poor.
Spirit of God
Help me
To be
So that I might see
You more.
Liz Babbs

Monday, August 3, 2009

Beautiful prayer posted by Andy Phillips

Hi folks, am back from Scotland now, but have had a nasty sickness bug that I'm still recovering from. Will post up some photos, soon, from what was an amazing dance conference. But in the meantime, here is a wonderful prayer posted by Andy Phillips on this blog:

As the setting sun reddens the western sky, we bless you;
As the moon rises in the east to greet the coming night, we worship you;
As another day draws to an end and the evening stars appear, we praise you.
This night the seas will rise and sweep clean sands whose beauty has been marred by restless footsteps;
Restore your image in us, Lord, as we sleep, which we have wounded by our foolishness and greed;
Bless and protect us, Lord, and those we love;
Grant us a quiet night and a perfect end, so may we greet you, come the dawn, with hearts and minds made new.