Fay Sampson

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Non-fiction Books


Darton, Longman & Todd.


For those with dementia, their carers, family, friends and the wider community.

Information and advice alternate with prayers.

Darton, Longman & Todd


For those with depression, their family, friends and the wider community.

Information and advice alternate with prayers.



Illustrated edition of

Visions and Voyages: The Story of Celtic Spirituality.

(Lion Hudson - ISBN: 0745952356)

The exciting story of how the Celtic Church developed in the British Isles and beyond, from pagan Celtic religion to wandering Irish scholars in Russia. Stories of the saints illustrate the variety of Celtic Christianity as it interacted with our unfolding history.

This new edition, with woodcuts by Hannah Firmin, makes it both an enjoyable and informative read, and an attractive gift.

Most such books are a mish-mash of ill-understood information. Fay Sampson's book is different and enjoyable.
The Friend
Absorbing, useful, unsentimental.
Church Times
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Find out more / Read an extract


Runes on the Cross: The Story of our Anglo-Saxon Heritage
(Triangle - ISBN: 0-281-05268-9)
How the Church in England developed, from conflicting Celtic and Roman beginnings to the Norman Conquest. Drawing on history, legends of the saints, the art of the Lindisfarne Gospels and Anglo-Saxon poetry, the strands entwine to tell an absorbing story.

In an easy and appetising style she leads the reader into an understanding of the changes.
Methodist Recorder
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coverpic - Runes on the Cross


May Day (The Living Festivals Series)
(Religious and Moral Education Press - ISBN: 0-08-031746-4)
The origins of the May Day festival, and how it is still celebrated today. From the significance of the Padstow Obby-Oss to Labour Day parades.
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Ascensiontide and Pentecost (The Living Festivals Series)
(Religious and Moral Education Press - ISBN: 0 08-031774-X)
How Christ's Ascension and the coming of the Holy Spirit led to the Whitsuntide customs still celebrated today. Includes contemporary understanding of the experience of the Holy Spirit.
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An Extract From Visions and Voyages:


In the mid fifth century, when Patrick was preaching his last sermons in the north of Ireland, a remarkable girl was born in the kingdom of Leinster, on the central plain. Her father Dubhthac was a man of high rank and a pagan, but her mother was his Christian slave. The child was called Brigid, the name of one of the Celtic triple goddesses, revered as a giver of plenty and the patron of learning - the crafts of the poet, blacksmith, healer.

This noble Dubhthac's jealous wife had the slave woman and her infant sold to a druid household. Brigid had a Christian mother, but, growing up among druids, she could hardly fail to be interested in the goddess whose name she bore.

Young Brigid comes across in the stories as a spirited lass. To begin with, she was clearly a favourite with her natural father, and returned as a teenager to his house. But she had no sense of personal property. Throughout her life, she gave away anything that could be eaten, worn or bartered.

At last her father could stand it no longer. He dumped her in his chariot and drove her off to the king's court, intending to sell her. While he went off to explain his business, a leper approached the chariot, begging. Brigid was just telling him she had nothing to give him when she noticed her father's sword. Impulsively she handed it over to him. When her enraged father found that she had given away his most precious possession, he dragged her in front of the king. Brigid stuck to her principles. She told the king, 'If I had all your power, and all your wealth, and this country itself, I'd give the whole lot away to the Lord of Creation.'

An offer of marriage was made to her by a highly honoured poet. Brigid refused. She said she wanted to start a community of celibate women. Whether she could actually have heard Patrick preach is doubtful, but she was clearly influenced by the ideal of ascetic life he had inspired in his disciples. As usual, she got what she wanted. She was given land for an abbey at Kildare, 'the Church of the Oak'. Her nuns ranged from princesses to slaves…

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