Saints of the Day – Finton of Taghmon, Abbot

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(also known as Finton Munnu, Mundus, Finian, Fintan)

Died October 31, c.635. Saint Finton, born into the noble Ui Niell clan, forsook the world as a youth to become a monk first under Saint Comgall, then under Saint Sinell at Cluain Inis, Ireland. After 18 years of monastic life, he left to become a monk for a time on Iona. On his arrival in 597, he found that Saint Columba had died (though one tradition has him living at Iona or a daughter abbey at Kilmore until Columba died). He was told by the new abbot, Baithene, that Columba had left instructions that Finton not be admitted because his destiny was to found another abbey.

Whether he returned to Ireland because his desired master had died, or whether Columba actually left instructions, Finton returned to Ireland. There he founded and became abbot of a monastery at Taghmon (Tech Munnu) in County Wexford, which he developed into an outstanding monastery. He was a firm supporter of the Celtic liturgical practices at the synod of Magh Lene in 630 in opposition to Saint Laserian and others.

Reputedly, Finton contracted leprosy in the later years of his life in response to his prayers to add to his spiritual merit through added penance. Finton Munnu was mentioned in the vitae of Saint Canice, Mochua, and Molua. Several churches in Scotland are dedicated to Finton, which may be due to the work of his disciples rather than his own evangelistic efforts (Attwater, Benedictines, Delaney, Farmer, Husenbeth, Montague).

MLA Citation

  • Katherine I Rabenstein. Saints of the Day, 1998. CatholicSaints.Info. 3 August 2020. Web. 23 November 2020. <>