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St. Finnian of Clonard

Finnian is also known as Finden of Clonard. He was born around 470 in Myshall, County Carlow, Ireland. Finnian is one of the great founders of Irish monasticism. He was great admirer of St. Patrick and studied in Wales under St. Giles the Wise and St. Cadoc of Llancarvan. Finnian founded three churches while he was a layman. About 520 he founded the monastery at Clonard; this foundation lasted a thousand years. Many saints, including Columba of Iona, and Columba of Terryglass came from this monastery. Finnian worked many miracles. Legends recount that he cleared the island of Falthlom and the area around Nantcarfan of parasites and that at his prayers the camp of Saxon raiders was destroyed by an earthquake. Finnian also had a great affinity for animals. He died between 549 and 552 of the plague. His feast day is December 12.

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