Iona Album: Journey Into the Morn Track: Encircling
Be Thou my breastplate, My sword for the flight, Be Thou my whole armour, Be Thou my true might Ephesians 6v10-20, Romans 13v12
LORICA The early Celtic church had many 'breastplate prayers', or 'lorica', which Declared the surrounding and Encompassing of God. Such prayers were Not to make God come - He is already There - but to open our eyes to the reality. In breastplate prayers, the person who Prays seeks to become aware of what is Already a reality.
(The lyrics are 4th century Irish, attributed to St Patrick)
I bind unto myself today The power of God to hold and lead His eye to watch, His might to stay His ear to hearken to my need The wisdom of my God to teach His hand to guide His shield to ward The word of God to give me speech His heavenly host to be my guard
TARA (Tara, the ancient capital of Ireland) At Tara today in this fateful hour I place all Heaven with its power And the sun with its brightness And the snow with its whiteness And the fire with all the strength it hath And the lightning with its rapid wrath And the winds with their swiftness along the path And the earth with its starkness. All these I place by God's almighty help and grace Between myself and the powers of darkness
The wisdom of my God to teach His hand to guide His shield to ward The word of God to give me speech His heavenly host to be my guard
CAIM Along with the prayer of encompassing, The Celtic Christians had a practice called The 'caim', in which they drew around them A circle ... this was a symbol of the encircling love of God.
The Mighty Three My protection Be Encircling me You are around My life, my home Encircling me O sacred Three