St Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. He was born in the ninth century in Wales. His father was a noble man and a deacon to the church. Patrick was abducted when he was 16 and brought to Ireland where he was sold as a slave. He worked as a shepherd on Slemish Mountain in County Antrim for 6 years until one night an angel came to him in a dream told him that his boat was waiting for him. With that he left and ran 200 miles to a boat.
He traveled to Britain and then to France where he spent 20 years as a monk in Marmoutier Abbey. He then received a celestial visitation in a dream telling him to return to the land that had enslaved him, although now he was to return on a mission, to enslave and to convert. Patrick and 24 of his followers arrived in Ireland. Patrick decided to talk to the High King because if he was the most powerful man in Ireland. Patrick spoke to King Laoghaire. While he was there he plucked a shamrock from the ground and tried to explain the to the druids and the King that the shamrock had three leaves but one plant just like God had three personas – The Father, The Son and the Holy Ghost. This was called the Trinity. King Laoghaire was very impressed and chose to accept Christianity. (I’m thinking God chose him…but anyway) He also gave Patrick the freedom to spread Christianity throughout Ireland. Patrick is thought to have died on the 17th of March sometime between 463 AD and 493 AD.
Very cool stuff huh? Like most folks I had heard about the legend of St. Patrick that he drove the snakes out of Ireland.
Well, that is kind of an allegory. Snakes are the symbol of Paganism. Saint Patrick did, in a sense, rid Ireland of pagans.
Unlike Valentine’s Day I do like this day. If it is truly in celebration of the man described here and not the drunken revelry most folks associate with St. Patrick’s Day.