St. Aidan's Celebrations And Exercises For Everyone In The World



St. Aidan’s Day 31 AUGUST or any day


Gather around the statue of St. Aidan in St. Mary’s Church Holy Island or around this picture any where in the world


Ldr + In the name of the sending Father

          In the name of the gentle Son

          In the name of the teaching Spirit

          In Love's name, the Three in One


Rdr    My teaching will fall like gentle rain on tender grass

         (Deuteronomy 32.2)


Ldr Lord, whose gentle apostle Aidan befriended everyone he met with Jesus Christ; give us his humble, Spirit-filled zeal, that we may inspire others to learn your ways, and to pass on the torch of faith.


All All that I am, all that I do, all whom I'll meet today I offer now to you.


A Lindisfarne Rhythm of Praise


Ldr   Ebb tide, full tide, praise the Lord of land and sea.

All    Barren rocks, darting birds, praise his holy name!

Ldr   Poor folk, ruling folk, praise the Lord of land and sea.

All   Pilgrimed sands, sea-shelled strands, praise his holy name!

Ldr  Fierce lions, gentle lambs, praise the Lord of land and sea. 

All  Noble women, mission priests, praise his holy name!

Ldr Chanting boys, slaves set free, praise the Lord of land and sea.

All  Old and young and all the land, praise his holy name

( No. 43 Celtic Hymn Book or for Norwegians from  Sanger Frau Lindisfarne)


Prayers by …


The Word of God


Rdr: Psalm 103 1 - 18


All Do not forget how kind he is        Alleluias may be sung


Rdr    Isaiah 6. 1-8


The Mantle of Aidan

A pilgrim knelt before this statue and wrote down these inspirations:


Oh Aidan, you had the vision of a population transformed in Christ.

You had the faith to come.

You had the gentleness to win the hearts of king and commoner.

You ministered in power and patience to the sick and dying;

You created teamwork.

Your visits to tell people good news gave your team a pattern to follow

You loved the people of the island.

You lived simply and prayed much

You prepared a mission to the kingdom.

You influenced many to reach others for Christ.

You are Christ for the nation.

You are apostle to this land

You are in pain that people are heedless of your Lord.

You will not rest till they are won.


All: Father, put the mantle of Aidan upon us.


Now or later write or record your own reflections

Rdr Matthew 11. 25-30


Rdr:   The Life of Aidan from Bede


It was from this island (of Iona) and this community of monks that Aidan was sent after his consecration as bishop to instruct the English kingdom in the faith of Christ...Among the lessons that Aidan had given the clergy about the conduct of their lives there was none more salutary than his own example of abstinence and self-discipline; and his teaching commended itself to everyone above all because he taught the way of life that he and his followers practiced. He neither sought nor cared for the possessions of this world...He used to travel everywhere whether in town or in the country, not on horseback but on foot, unless forced to do otherwise by some urgent necessity, so that wherever as he walked he caught sight of people, rich or poor, he could at once turn and speak to them. If they were unbelievers he would invite them to accept the mystery of faith and encourage by his words and actions in the practice of almsgiving and mercy.


Prayers …


Ldr Lord, Aidan was humble and loving; forgive us for being proud; 

Lord have mercy;  All Lord, have mercy.

Ldr Lord, Aidan was a faithful shepherd; forgive us for being faithless;

Christ, have mercy All Christ, have mercy.

Ldr Lord, Aidan brought the torch of Christ for all to see; forgive us for hiding the light;

Lord, have mercy All Lord, have mercy.



Rdr Lord, we of this day are children of confusion;

restore the vision of God to us.

The noise of the city deafens us to the still small voice;

restore the hearing of God to us.

The pace of modern living stifles us;

restore the alertness of God to us.

The pride of modern living imprisons us;

restore the liberty of God to us.


All sing to the tune Danny Boy:

Here be the peace of those who do your sacred will;

Here be the praise of God by night and day

Here be the place where strong ones serve the weakest

Here be a sight of ChristÂ’s mos gentle way.

Here be the strength of prophets righting greed and wrong

Here be the green of land thatÂ’ tilled with love

Here be the soil of holy lives maturing

Here be a people one with all the saints above.

No. 73 Celtic Hymnbook


Reaching out

Rdr: Set us free, O God, to cross barriers for you, as you crossed barriers for us.

Spirit of God, make us open to others in listening, generous to others in giving,

and sensitive to others in praying through Jesus Christ our Lord.


We pray for the conversion of English-speaking peoples and peoples of every language

We pray for the renewal of the British Church and of the church everywhere

We pray that you will raise up new communities of witness...

We pray for members of the Community of Aidan and Hilda

We pray for .... (free prayer)


Ldr From today and always

May we look upon each person with the eyes of Christ

Speak to each person we meet with the words of Christ

And go wherever we are led with the peace of Christ.


Community of Aidan and Hilda

From Celtic Worship Through the Year Hodders 1997



ACROSS THE SEA –  3 SEA CHANGE EXERCISES on Lindisfarne or anywhere



From Holy Island Heugh look across the sea to Farne Isle or imagine this from anywhere.

 Although he was unbelievably busy, Aidan cut out time to retreat (as all Community of Aidan and Hilda followers commit to do). While on retreat on Farne Isle he saw a hostile invading tyrant setting fire to the houses and political headquarters of his large kingdom of Northumbria at Bamburgh. He kept his right arm raised in prayer and said ‘See, Lord, what the tyrant does’. As his arm was thus lifted in commanding prayer the wind changed, blew smoke in the faces of the invading horses and warriors, who panicked and fled.  The kingdom and the Irish Mission to the English were saved.  Raise your arm. Take authority over some destructive situation.  See what God can do.


Healed places and holy women

Look further south along the sea coast, visualizing Hartlepool and Lastingham beyond the horizon or imagine this from anywhere.

Aidan called holy women to be leaders of women (and later men also).  Hilda built up a vibrant community at Hartlepool and later another for men and women at Whitby further down the coast. Following the destructions of double monasteries of men and women led by women in Britain, ‘France’ and ‘Germany’ it was a thousand years before women again led both men and women in the church. Pray for holy spiritual foster mothers today to harvest many vocations.

Further South than Hartlepool is Lastingham, a little inland. Aidan instructed his disciples to soak a place in prayer for forty days before beginning to build a faith community or church – cleansing it of unclean or controlling human influences that may have become embedded.  This was done at Lastingham. Pray for the healing of ‘wounded group memory’ in a place or church.


Pour oil on troubled waters

Look south to where a VIP from Kent would start to sail north to Bamburgh or imagine this from anywhere.

Northumbria’s king (in the Irish tradition of Christianity) was to marry a Princess from Kent in the Roman tradition. She was to be escorted by boat.  If she perished in rough seas disaster and war might ensue. Her chief escort (the abbot of Gateshead) feared this so much that he brought his concerns to Aidan.  Aidan prophesied that there would be a storm. He prayed over a phial of oil, and told the abbot to poor this blessed oil on the troubled waters and they would become calm. All this happened. It led to the phrase ‘pouring oil on troubled waters’ entering the English language.

As you envisage Aidan’s blessed oil being poured, think of troubled waters in life today and in your imagination pour oil upon them.



Keep standing until you get angel escorts

Look across the sea to the Rock of Bamburgh, where Aidan had his little cell church or imagine this from anywhere.

Aidan became terminally ill at Bamburgh. He continued to pray, standing, leaning against a buttress. Ephesians 6: 14 urges us, having done everything we can, to stand in prayer. A teenager named Cuthbert, guarding sheep forty miles away, saw angels escorting this holy soul to heaven, and was moved to offer himself for life service to God. If you are young, visualize a ladder full of angels reaching to heaven from places on your heart.  If you are old, offer your soul to God and ‘see’ the angels raising you up.


Try Doing Aidan ‘Rap’

A crazy guy tramped across Lindisfarne’s Pilgrim Posts and started to do ‘Rap’ about St. Aidan. He recorded this and some of it is included on page 142 of A Holy Island Prayer Book.  This is a short excerpt: ‘Oh Aidan was an Irish lad who found the light of God. He saw it in the sunshine, he saw it in each sod. It brought him to Iona, the place that’s thin with sin. It led him on to Lindisfarne a mighty work to begin …. So bless the Lord for this gentle soul and the light that won’t go out. Come on, me lads, get off your horse; tell the folk what its all about’.  Try walking around and doing your own Rap - you can do better!


Aidan for the world

Why not support those who propose Aidan fills a vacancy: patron saint of UK or of the eight Administrations of ‘The Isles’?  Or even as patron saint of all English-speakers and indigenous peoples throughout the world?


Further reading:

The Man Who Gave his horse to a beggar: following in the footsteps of Aidan of Lindisfarne, the Saint Who Walked to Heaven through Ireland, Scotland, and the North of England. John Connell.

St. Aidan’s Way of Mission: Ray Simpson with Brent Lyons-Lee (BRF)

Aidan of Lindisfarne: Irish Flame Warms a New World (a historical novel) Ray Simpson (Wipf & Stock)

Lectio App Pete Gregg  Iona to Lindisfarne

A Holy Island Prayer Book: Ray Simpson (Morehouse)


To download, click here.


Posted at 12:27pm on 24th August 2023
Blog Archive
*AUTHOR SIGNED* Monk in the Market Place
£9.99 + P&P
More Info
buy now
*AUTHOR SIGNED* Before We Say Goodbye (HarperCollins)
£9.99 + P&P
More Info
buy now