Today we are in Dornoch, visiting St Finbarr's Church, which is located on School Brae.
Gilbert de Moravia, Bishop of Caithness, built a cathedral in Dornoch between 1224 and 1245.
Before then, very few people lived in the area. There were probably a few small farms nearby with families living in small, turf-built cottages thatched with heather. Perhaps there was also a small stone-built church dedicated to Saint Finbarr standing to the east of the present Cathedral graveyard, and there may even have been a small community of monks living in beehive cells on the hill that rises to the north of the town centre.
Some sources suggest that Saint Finbarr brought Christianity to this area in 540 AD and established a monastic community here in Dornoch, but there is no real historical or archaeological evidence to support this view.
Forth in Thy Name, O Lord, I go,
My daily labour to pursue;
Thee, only Thee, resolved to know
In all I think or speak or do.
The task Thy wisdom hath assigned,
O let me cheerfully fulfill;
In all my works Thy presence find,
And prove Thy good and perfect will.
Preserve me from my calling’s snare,
And hide my simple heart above,
Above the thorns of choking care,
The gilded baits of worldly love.
Thee may I set at my right hand,
Whose eyes mine inmost substance see,
And labour on at Thy command,
And offer all my works to Thee.
Give me to bear Thy easy yoke,
And every moment watch and pray,
And still to things eternal look,
And hasten to Thy glorious day.
For Thee delightfully employ
Whate’er Thy bounteous grace hath giv’n;
And run my course with even joy,
And closely walk with Thee to Heav’n.