The Patron Saint Of Motorcycling
The Vatican has officially endorsed an early Irish saint, Columbanus of Bobbio, as the patron saint of motorcyclists. He was born on the Carlow/Wicklow border in the year 543 ad, and died at the monastery he founded in Bobbio, in what is now Northern Italy in 615 AD, after many years of traveling around Europe. His bones still lie interred in his church there.
A handsome rugged kind of chap, he left Ireland to escape the clutches of lascivious women who were irresistibly attracted to him. According to the biography of his life written by Jonas, one of the many miracles attributed to him involved the multiplication of bread and beer, as follows:
"A while after, Columban went to the monastery of Fontaines and found sixty brethren hoeing the ground and preparing the fields for the future crop. When he saw them breaking up the clods with great labor, he said, "May the Lord prepare for you a feast, my brethren." Hearing this the attendant said, "Father, believe me, we have only two loaves and a very little beer." Columban answered, "Go and bring those." The attendant went quickly and brought the two loaves and a little beer. Columban, raising his eyes to heaven, said, "Christ Jesus, only hope of the world, do Thou, who from five loaves satisfied five thousand men in the wilderness, multiply these loaves and this drink." Wonderful faith! All were satisfied and each one drank as much as he wished. The servant carried back twice as much in fragments and twice the amount of drink. And so he knew that faith is more deserving of the divine gifts than despair, which is wont to diminish even what one has."
His Feast day is the 23rd November