St Gothian, Gwithian
St Gothian was one of several hundred Irish missionaries who landed at Hayle in the 6th Century AD to evangelise Cornwall. Sadly King Teudar, presumably mistaking them for marauding invaders martyred the majority, including Gothian. It's not known whether he established his prayer oratory or whether it's merely dedicated to him. It sits in the sand dunes near Godrevy but has been completely covered by the invading sand. The holy well reputedly still exists but this too is very hard to find amidst undergrowth.
The prayer oratory would originally have been of wood and in subsequent centuries various stone structures were built on the same site, until it had to be abandoned and a new stone church built on higher ground nearby, in what is now Gwithian village.
(Plan taken from Gwithian by Charles Thomas 1964 booklet bought in Gwithian Church)
It was very hard to locate the site of the original chapel as all that remains is a raised hillock on private land. However, we visited the church to pray and that was interesting.
Stepping inside the church, we were immediately embraced by the presence of God and the chatter of touristy busyness in the surrounding area fell away. We settled to pray by the altar. The atmosphere was reminiscent of God's presence at Church Cove on The Lizard where there was a strong sense of God's nurturing mother's heart. Here too in Gwithian, there was a sense of being embraced by God and pulled close to His breast in safety. There's a tenderness as He draws near and His Holy Spirit ministers to us.
As I'm resting in God's presence, I suddenly realise that an angel is present who looks like a fully armed knight. He is in the middle of the aisle and seems assigned to the actual church a he is not interacting with us or acknowledging our presence at all. I turn back to focussing on Jesus. At this point I see another angel descend into the church. This one is totally different from the one on duty. It is very feminine in appearance, draped in a blue robe, with blond hair and white wings and she approaches us. There's a softness and tenderness to this ministering angel who seems to carry the mother heart of God and the kindness. There's a protective element also to their interaction with us, a shielding from evil which is very precious.
The inscribed stone from St Gothian's chapel is now on show in the St Gothian's parish church, Gwithian.
Sadly we were then interrupted and our visit cut short. However, there is clearly an ancient well here and it's one I'd like to return to and pray more to see what God wants to reveal further. Well worth a visit.