The Feast of St. Andrew, 'Là Naomh Anndrais'

Today is the Feast of St. Andrew, which is also a national holiday in Scotland. For those few Scots who still speak Gaelic, which has not been taught as a nationalistic project as in Ireland, the day is called 'Là Naomh Anndrais.' 

The relationship between St. Andrew and Scotland is a little attenuated, somewhat like the relationship between England and the Holy Grail. That latter depends on the person of Joseph of Arimathea, who supposedly brought the Holy Grail to Glastonbury for safekeeping. In Andrew's case, some of his remains were supposedly brought to Scotland long after his death, and a Pictish king once asked him for a favor in return for naming him the patron saint of the land, and the king felt like the saint had kept his part of the bargain.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The politics of why the earlier Celtic patron saints were replaced with Andrew is either fascinating or tedious in the extreme, depending on which writer you are reading. Part of it was that having an apostle as your national patron had more cachet than a mere local or Irish import.

I was, however, informed that St. Jude, not St. Andrew, is the patron saint of golfers. ;)