Celebrate Ireland’s St. Brigid’s feast day by learning to weave the cross named in her honor at the Irish Cultural Center of the Mohawk Valley – Museum, 623 Columbia St, Utica, NY, Wednesday, Jan 25, 2023, 6:30 PM. Materials from Ireland and instructions included.
The $10 fee includes materials and instructions for you to weave a cross to take home with you. Children under 16 are free when accompanied by an adult. Please indicate in the Eventbrite comments how many children will be attending with you so we have enough materials for everyone.
Brigid’s cross, or Brigit’s cross, is a small cross usually woven from rushes. Typically it has four arms tied at the ends and a woven square in the middle.
Brigid’s crosses are associated with Brigid of Kildare, one of the patron saints of Ireland. The crosses are traditionally made in Ireland on St Brigid’s feast day, 1 February, which was formerly celebrated as a pagan festival (Imbolc) marking the beginning of spring. Many rituals are associated with the making of the crosses. Traditionally they were set over doorways and windows to protect the home from any kind of harm.
In Christianity, St Brigid and her cross are linked together by a story about her weaving this form of cross at the deathbed of either her father or a pagan lord, who, upon hearing what the cross meant, asked to be baptized. One version goes as follows:
A pagan chieftain from the neighbourhood of Kildare was dying. Christians in his household sent for Brigid to talk to him about Christ. When she arrived, the chieftain was raving. As it was impossible to instruct this delirious man, hopes for his conversion seemed doubtful. Brigid sat down at his bedside and began consoling him. As was customary, the dirt floor was strewn with rushes both for warmth and cleanliness. Brigid stooped down and started to weave them into a cross, fastening the points together. The sick man asked what she was doing. She began to explain the cross, and as she talked, his delirium quieted, and he questioned her with growing interest. Through her weaving, he converted and was baptized at the point of death. Since then, the cross of rushes has existed in Ireland.
At this event, you will learn a little bit about the life of St. Brigid as well as how to weave one of these simple yet beautiful crosses for your home. This will be a child-friendly event, so please feel free to bring along a child or grandchild, and we will provide appropriate materials for their use as well. Please let us know if you intend to bring a child or two along so that we have enough materials.
Please register through Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/weave-a-st-bridgets-cross-tickets-489962118887