Monday 2 January 2023

Saint Lochaid of Moville, January 2

On January 2 the Irish calendars commemorate Saint Lochaid (Lochait) an abbot of Moville, County Down, the monastery founded by Saint Finnian, who was described in the Life of Saint Comgall as 'the bishop who sleeps amid many miracles in his own city of Magh Bile'. Not a great deal of information has survived about today's saint, for as Canon O'Hanlon notes below his death is not recorded in the Irish annals:
Article IV. St. Lochaid or Lochait, Abbot of Magh Bile or Moville, County of Down. 
The religious community presided over by this saint was situated near the head of Strangford Lough. It lay about an English mile to the north-east of Newtown Ards. We learn from the "Martyrology of Donegal," that the feast of Lochait, Abbot of Magh-bile, had been celebrated on this day.  A similar entry is met with in the "Martyrology of Tallagh," at the 2nd of January. Although our annals have deaths of various bishops and abbots of Maghbile, yet this holy man's name does not appear among them. It is difficult, in consequence, to assign his exact place in the local and abbatial succession.

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