The Celebration of St Patrick
|By Andreas F. Borchert, CC BY-SA 3.0 de, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14609082|
To many of us, St Patrick's Day is a day of celebrating all things green and drinking...a LOT. Green beer, green hair, green clothes; the list goes on. But does anyone really know who Saint Patrick was? What is his story?
Today for school I decided to find out, because sadly, I had no clue. Here is what I found:
Saint Patrick was a slave, starting in the year 395 AD at the age of 16, and it lasted for 6 years until the Lord set him free. This part of the story is very intriguing, because he was a young man who had been introduced to Christianity by his grandfather but never took it serious, until he was in the bonds of slavery. He grew close to God out there in the fields with his sheep, talking to Him in his loneliness and in the midst of all the pain. He came from a wealthy family of a tax collector so had never known want until he was captured by the Irish and enslaved by a man named Miliucc. One night, God showed him a way of escape, on a trade ship and ended back in his homeland and was greatly welcomed back by his family. He was not content though and continued to search the Lord for what he was meant to do in his life.
It wasn't until 40 years later that he was called back to Ireland to spread the word of God and the Love of Jesus. He was a missionary, a man who dreamed dreams and had visions. A man who was close with God and who God used to bring more than 120,000 people to Jesus. March 17th is celebrated as St Patrick's Day because it was the day he died somewhere around the year 460 AD.
I literally had no idea that this man, Saint Patrick, was a missionary, a man after God's own heart. How inspiring! Over the years, the celebration of this man has become a celebration of all things Irish and a day of partying. Maybe in Ireland it is actually a day to celebrate a man who brought faith, hope, and life to a country in need, but sadly it isn't how I have ever seen it celebrated.
So today, we remember that the shamrock isn't for luck, but was possibly used by Saint Patrick to teach about the Holy Trinity - The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. I don't think I will ever look at St Patrick's Day the same ever again.
Have a blessed celebration of Saint Patrick today!