Saturday 3 September 2016

Saint Balin of Tech-Saxon, September 3

September 3 is the feast of an English saint who came to Ireland with Saint Colman of Lindisfarne following the decision of the Synod of Whitby to adopt the Roman dating of Pascha. Saint Balin or Balloin is said to have been a brother of Saint Gerald of Mayo as Canon O'Hanlon explains:

St. Balin or Balloin, of Tech-Saxon.

The present holy man was a brother to St. Gerald, or Garalt, whose life has been given, at the 13th of March. The Martyrologies of Marianus O'Gorman, of Cathal Maguire, and of Donegal, record the festival of St. Balan or Balloin, at the 3rd of September. It is stated, that he came from England to Ireland, with his brothers, Gerald, Berikert and Hubritan, after the middle of the seventh century. He lived at a place, called Tech-Saxan, or the House of the Saxons, most probably because it had been founded or occupied by himself, or by his brothers, or by some of his countrymen, who accompanied him from England. This place is said to have been in Athenry Parish, in the Diocese of Tuam, and County of Galway. Castellan places this St. Balo in the province of Connaught, and his feast at the present day, as noted by the Bollandists.

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