Today is also the Optional Memoria of the seventh century St Aidan and the Saints of Lindisfarne, whose lives of prayer and evangelisation have shone such a bright light in the faith of our country.

Of St Aidan, the Venerable Bede wrote: ‘He was one to traverse both town and country on foot, never on horseback, unless compelled by some urgent necessity; and wherever in his way he saw any, either rich or poor, he invited them, if infidels, to embrace the mystery of the faith or if they were believers, to strengthen them in the faith, and to stir them up by words and actions to alms and good works. … This [the reading of scriptures and psalms, and meditation upon holy truths] was the daily employment of himself and all that were with him, wheresoever they went …’

May he pray for us, in our own life of prayer and service, and may God bless you this day.