St. David, Patron of Wales
Feast Day March 1st
Saint David was born in Wales about the year 500 and died close to the end of the 6th century. He was the most famous of the saints in the early church of the British Isles.
He was the son of noble parents and studied in the region of Cardigan. Soon after David became a priest he traveled to a lonely island to study with a blind teacher named Paulinus. There he learned to preach eloquently. One day while preaching many people could not see nor hear him. To help them the ground under David rose up to become a hill, and a snow-white dove appeared upon his shoulder. Statues and images show him with a dove, the emblem of peace.
David went on to found monasteries, the last of which in Menevia, a coastal town on the western edge of Britain, where he remained to become its bishop. He was a strict spiritual director. Admission to the monastery was only after ten days of demanding self-denial. At the beginning of the "Dark Ages" when people were being drawn away by pagan religions, he maintained the flame of Christian faith during an age of despair and confusion. He was a patron of education and founded a library in the city. The present cathedral still standing in the ancient city of St. David's was built on the site of David's original one. A piece of stone from the monastic ruins in that city is anchored at the base of our altar here in Wellington.
Flag of Wales
The Flag of Wales consists of a red dragon passant on a green and white field. As with many heraldic charges, the exact representation of the dragon is not standardized and many renderings exist. The flag incorporates the Red Dragon of Cadwaladr, King of Gwynedd, along with the Tudor colors of green and white. It was used by Henry VII at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 after which it was carried in state to St Paul's Cathedral in London. The red dragon was then included in the Tudor royal arms to signify their Welsh descent. It was officially recognized as the Welsh national flag in 1959. Wales, Bhutan and Malta are the only countries to have a dragon on their flag, though the Chinese flag also featured a dragon during the Qing Dynasty. St. David's founding rector, Fr. Leslie Jenkins was originally Welsh; hence our dedication to their patron saint.
Coat of Arms Diocese of St. David's
The Flag of Saint David is normally a yellow cross on a black field, and is the flag of the cathedral and diocese of that city (although a silver cross is used for the city of St. David.) It has been used as a flag representing Wales (as an alternative to the Red Dragon flag), in the same sense that the crosses of Saint George, Saint Andrew, Saint Patrick, and Saint Piran are used to represent England, Scotland, Ireland, and Cornwall their patron saints.