Strugging with the Celtic Crazy

me on any given afternoon

me on any given afternoon

Do you have a temper?

I do. And I never knew it until I had kids. To think, I could’ve lived my life thinking that I was a really great person.

I turn into this guy in intense situations like when I need to make dinner and the baby is crying, the three-year-old is complaining about the dinner I haven’t yet made, the five-year-old keeps asking when dinner is because he’s starving and the six-year-old is sweetly asking if there’s anything that she can do to help except for that one thing that I’ve asked her to do but she’d prefer not to, and my husband’s going to be home soon and I know that he’s had a tough day and I would really rather him not come home to this because I would like him to keep coming home.

Or if someone forgets to say please.

Parenthood has brought to the surface the Celtic crazy that runs deep in my blood. It’d be a cause for despair, but I recently found a saint with the same problem who overcame it.

St. Louis de Montfort. The original Marian consecration guy.

I just finished Fr. Michael Gaitley’s 33 Days to Morning Glory, and I was stoked to find such a saintly specimen of the same stock as me. Fr. Michael Gaitley begins his updated Marian consecration by looking at the saint who authored the classic Marian consecration book True Devotion to Mary.

St. Louis de Montfort was born in 1673, one of eighteen children born to the de Montforts, in Brittany, the part of France that juts into the Celtic Sea. Fr. Gaitley traces the fiery roots of St. Louis and his dad back to the Celtic warriors, from whom they must have had descended.

Often wearing nothing but blue battle paint, real Celtic warriors would work themselves into a blood-thirsty frenzy, rush into combat screaming their heads off, and wildly slash, bash, and slice away at their enemies with huge, two-handed swords. These fierce fighting men, despite their lack of discipline, armor, and order, were extremely effective in battle because of their unmatched passion and ferocity. Throughout history, nobody has wanted to mess with the crazy Celtic warriors.

St. Louis’s dad, Jean Grignion, must have been descended from these wild-men warriors, for nobody wanted to mess with him either. In fact, he was known for having the most fiery temper in all of Brittany. St. Louis…confessed that his temper was just as bad as his father’s. But Louis channeled his fiery passion not to threats and violence but to laboring for the greater Glory of God–well, except for the time he knocked out a couple of drunks who wouldn’t stop heckling him while he preached. (p. 6)

So, let’s shoot for that. The next time the Celtic crazy comes around, you know who you can call on.

Copyright 2014 Meg Matenaer


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