Greetings, gentle readers. Evidence to the contrary, I do still reside on the face of the earth. Just not in this particular blogosphere of late. If you're reading this, that must mean you've continued checking up on me anyway. Many thanks.

Since St. Patrick's Day was yesterday, I'd like to draw your attention to one of the greatest hymns ever written: St. Patrick's Breastplate. As hymns go, it's pretty epic. With a marathon seven verses, it rates three pages in most hymnals. And how many hymns do you know that have a completely different melody for the sixth verse? Plus, if you've ever read Madeleine L'Engle's A Swiftly Tilting Planet, one of these verses will sound strangely familiar to you...