Happy St. Patrick’s Day – March 17, 2017
Corned beef and cabbage, parades, green beer, and smiles everywhere, who wouldn’t love St. Patrick’s Day? But who was St. Patrick?
Traditional history records that Patrick was born to Roman parents circa 387 in the imperial province of Britannia of the Roman Empire, in what is now called Scotland. His father is believed to have been a high ranking official in the provincial government of Gaul or Britannia.
At age 16 he was kidnapped by Irish raiders who held him as a slave for six years. His writings indicate that he lived in great affliction and fear during his captivity, but he noted that his love for God and his faith increased as he found comfort through much prayer. Later in life he realized that this captivity prepared him for his future work and what we know as his ultimate legacy. During those years in captivity he learned the Celtic language and the polytheistic (Druid) culture of Ireland.
After escaping from his captors, he became a Catholic priest and an avid student of the Bible. He was selected to help with missionary work in Britannia where he was actively involved in preaching against heretical teachings, such as those taught by the British monk Pelagius. After many years of missionary work in Britannia he was commissioned by Pope Celestine to be a missionary to Ireland.
Patrick returned to Ireland and witnessed of the one God “who so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son.” He used the three-leaves of the shamrock to teach about the Trinity and the t-shape of the shamrock to teach about the atoning work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Most of those on the island embraced his teachings, including those from the family of his former master, Milchu. To the dismay of Patrick, his former master, Milchu, committed suicide upon hearing of his approach rather than hearing what Patrick had to say. The Christian teachings of Patrick united the people of Ireland for centuries.
Tradition has it that St. Patrick entered his eternal rest peacefully, on March 17, 493. And so, we remember St. Patrick, and celebrate a life well lived. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!
His Lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord. (Mat 25:23 KJV)