Image: Stain glass window in Aylward house, Glasnevin

Brigid and Daire 

The Holy Abbess Brigid took into her Convent in Kildare a little orphan child called Daire. She was totally blind, but Brigid sheltered her with her love and trained her in the Christian way of life. Daire lived and breathed with Jesus. The other sisters talked to her of the world around her with its sheep strewn plains, its faraway mountains, its rivers and lakes, its town with its families, tradesmen, artisans, soldiers and chieftains. Daire, being human, began to be drawn towards the pleasures of the human eye. She often heard people speak of miracles worked by Brigid and one day, overcome with longing, she begged Brigid to lay her hand upon her eyes and give her bodily sight. Reluctantly Brigid listened to her prayer and God gave the child the gift she sought. Joyously Daire ran out to feast on the beauties and excitements of the world. Evening came and Daire felt a great dark void within her. Where was the loving constant companionship with Jesus she had formerly enjoyed? She crept back to Brigid and poured out her contrition. Brigid clasped her in her arms and prayed to God to take back the gift He had given. Once more Daire’s inner eye rejoiced in the glory of the Vision splendid.