Posted by: anna | February 12, 2010

St Melangell

icon of St Melangell by the hand of Aidan Hart, image from here
Today (31 January) we commemorate St Melangell. I have also posted about her here. From Miss Dunbar:

St. Melangell or Monacella, patron of hares. Founder and patron of the church of Pennant Melangell, near Llangynog in Montgomeryshire. The chancel and nave of this church were divided by a carved screen, on which was represented the legend of the tutelar saint.

She was the daughter of an Irish monarch ; she had a vow of celibacy and fled to Wales to avoid being married to a nobleman of her own country. She lived unseen for fifteen years until 604, when Brochwel Yseythrog, prince of Powys, hunting in the neighbourhood, ran a hare into a thicket and found it nestling in her dress ; she, deep in prayer and meditation, had not heard the dogs or the horn. The prince in vited her to leave her solitude, but as that was not her wish, he gave her the adjacent lands on which to build a church. All the hares went to her for safety and followed her about. Hares were thence called Wyn Melangell, Monacella’s lambs. For centuries no one would kill a hare in the parish, and if any one shouted after a hunted hare, “God and Monacella be with thee,” it was sure to escape. Blackwood s Magazine, November 1875, “Legends and Folk-lore of North Wales.” Eees, Welsh Saints, p. 209, says she was a Welsh woman, her mother Irish, and that her cell is to be seen in a rock near the church. Her relics were still shown in 1811.


Troparion of St Melangell tone 8
Preferring the rigours of monasticism to worldly status and marriage, 0 pious Melangell,/ though wast fifteen years on a rock, emulating the example of the Syrian Stylites./ Wherefore, 0 Saint, pray to God that He will give us strength to serve Him as He wills,/ that we may be found worthy of His great mercy.

Kontakion of St Melangell tone 4Praise, glory and honour are thy due, 0 righteous Melangell,/ for in consecrating thy virginity to Christ, thou didst give us a model of Christian living./ Wherefore we who keep thy festival/ pray for grace to amend our lives according to thy example,/ glorifying God in every word and deed.

Holy Melangell, pray to God for us.

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