Sorry for so little blogging recently. Life has been very busy, for reasons which I hope to be able to explain soon.
The BBC (also Joel Watts in a retweet, but surprisingly he doesn’t seem to have blogged about this yet) reports that the heart of Dublin’s patron saint has been stolen from the cathedral where it was kept. The 12th century relic of St Laurence O’Toole was stolen from inside a cage with iron bars. The thief apparently ignored nearby gold chalices and candlesticks and intentionally took only the heart.
Interestingly, this is an Anglican (Church of Ireland) cathedral. It seems strange to me as an Anglican that a relic like this is, or was, kept in one of our church buildings. It is of course of historic interest. But if it had become an object of veneration, it is perhaps good that, like Nehushtan in 2 Kings 18:4, it has been removed.
Perhaps the thief realised how heartless he or she was, and thought a saint’s heart would help with mending ways. Of course wrongdoing is never the road to repentance. But it is only God, through Jesus, who can give such a person the new heart they need:
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
Ezekiel 26:26-27 (NIV)