As a young shepherd in Northumbria he saw St Aiden’s soul being carried up to Heaven by angels and thought ‘that’s the life for me’.
He rushed to Melrose to take on the habit of a lifetime. He worked hard and was made Prior of Lindisfarne on the Holy Island.
Realizing he had missed out on the hermit bit, he found a tiny island called Farne nine miles away. This was it — a small cell, lousy weather, wave-washed, nothing would grow — he even had to pray himself a well of fresh water.
He would only talk to visitors through his cell window, and as the way these things work, he became exceedingly popular and was wanted back at Lindisfarne.
It took a visit from the King himself to persuade him to become a bishop, but after two years he resigned and was back at Farne. After his death, marauding Danes arrived. His body was whisked away and carried around for a year, and the coffin caused many miracles like a magic box.
You can find his beads on the beach at Lindisfarne in the shape of small colored pebbles with holes in them. If you make a necklace it will probably ward off almost anything.