A Fursey-Tide Pilgrimage

I’d left it until the day after the Feast of St.Fursey, planning to walk from Great Yarmouth. Then, I wimped out! There was snow in the air and the Queens Head was not serving food at lunchtime. When I arrived in the afternoon the weather had moderated but it was still cold enough to imagine the scene recorded by the Ven.Bede. Long before Dante’s other wordly journey had resulted in his famous Inferno, St. Fursey had visions of the hereafter and the Fires of Hell that would burn up Evil.


An ancient brother of our monastery is still living, who is wont to declare that a very sincere and religious man told him, that he had seen Fursey himself in the province of the East Angles, and heard those visions from his mouth; adding, that though it was in most sharp winter weather, and a hard frost, and the man was sitting in a thin garment when he related it, yet he sweated as if it had been in the greatest heat of summer, either through excessive fear, or spiritual consolation. (Ecclesiastical History Bk. 3.19)

It was the visions led Fursey to become an evangelist. Yes, he would warn his hearers of the fires of hell, his repeated mantras were :-


The saints shall advance from one virtue to another

and

The God of gods shall be seen in Sion

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