This collection of Irish prayers has been drawn from many sources. Some are simple prayers composed by the people for their daily use. Others are more sophisticated, the work of poets and theologians. All of them have the deep faith and the closeness to nature and to everyday human life that are characteristics of Irish spirituality.
Each of the prayers is provided with an English translation on the facing page. This should help those with a limited knowledge of Irish to understand the original versions and to use them as prayers. At the same time, it should make it possible for those with no knowledge of the language to enter into the unique world of Celtic Christianity, stretching from the time of St Patrick to our own day. These are not prayers for reading. They are prayers for praying.
Desmond Forristal was parish priest of Dalkey until his retirement in 2001. Ordained as a priest in 1955, he worked for almost twenty years as scriptwriter and director on Radharc religious documentaries, and is the author of numerous successful plays and biographies. He passed away in September 2012 at the age of eighty-one.
Padraig O Fiannachta