Finbar was born in the latter part of the 6th century to a lady of the Irish royal court and an artisan. At Baptism he was given the name Lochan but received the name Fionbarr (“White-head”) from his educators, the monks of Kilmacahill, Kilkenny, on account of his light hair. He is reported to have visited St. David in Pembrokenhire in southern Wales and to have accompanied him to Rome. Pope St. Gregory is said to have wanted to make Finbar a Bishop but to have been deterred by a vision notifying him that God had reserved that honor to Himself.
St. Finbar preached the Gospel throughout southern Ireland and founded a number of churches. He then went to live the life of a hermit on a small island in Gouganebarra. Later, he founded a monastery at Lough Eirc, marhland at the mounth of the Lee River, called Corcaghmer from which Cork is derived.
Soon candidates for the monastery began arriving in ever-increasing numbers and its school began to extend its influence over the whole of southern Ireland. Out of the desert arose the great city of Cork, and Finbar is regarded as its founder and first Bishop.
PRAYER: God, You made St. Finbar an outstanding exemplar of Divine love and the faith that conquers the world, and added him to the roll of saintly pastors. Grant by his intercession that we may persevere in Faith and love and become sharers of his glory. Amen.