This is the kind of news I hunger for and am excited to share. Hope and Strong Women!
February 1, 2023 is finally here when Ireland gives Brigid her voice. It’s been a long time coming and the timing is ripe for the women’s movements around the world. This is why I am telling her story. The stories are what we need and why we continue to uncover the heroines that came before.
HERSTORY IS EVERY WOMAN’S STORY
Founded in 2016, Herstory is a multi-disciplinary storytelling platform that illuminates and celebrates female role-models. Through pioneering education and art programmes, we inspire, educate and empower our youth and nation. In turn, we spark sister movements across the world.
The discovery that sparked a movement
In contrast to the handful of women we learn about in Irish schools, Herstory discovered that there are over one thousand fascinating women featured in the Dictionary of Irish Biography.
The amnesia of women’s stories is not just an Irish problem – this is a global phenomenon.
Herstory’s successful campaign to make Brigid’s Day Ireland’s new national holiday.
In The Life of Brigid, her biographer Cogitosus reveals that Brigid was a born leader who charismatically persuaded the Christian hermit Conleth to abandon his life of solitude and join her to form a ‘mutally happy alliance’ and lead the Kildare community. He was the bishop and she was the abbess, and together they created a double monastery from the Early Christian tradition. Within 100 years of her death, there was a thriving egalitarian monastery of men and women, living and practicing equally, side-by-side.
In the 21st century, Brigid reemerged as an inspirational heroine of the Marriage Equality and Repeal the 8th referendums – both extraordinary victories of compassion. Ireland’s matron saint is our first recorded abortionist, compassionately ‘restoring a nun’s chastity’, as recorded by early Christian monks in The Annals. She was also a lesbian, ‘sharing her bed with a woman.’ Brigid may be an anomaly for Catholicism, but one thing is for sure, she represents true Christianity.
In one generation, Ireland has transformed from No Country for Women to a world leader for equality. The time has come to write a new story of unity by celebrating Brigid and all Mná, a proclamation of a true Ireland of Equals and the realisation of the 1916 vision that made Ireland the first country in the world to promise equal rights and religious freedom to all men, women and children. Making Brigid’s Day a national holiday is a true reflection of today’s progressive, inclusive Ireland, sending a strong egalitarian message to the world.
Article by Herstory Founder Melanie Lynch
Herstory is calling on all counties and diaspora centres across the world to illuminate for the first official national holiday on Brigid’s Day 2023. From the shadows into the light, this will be a joyous celebration of all Mná, our Celtic Goddess, Matron Saint and Imbolc, the ancient festival of Spring.