St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th, is an Irish holiday celebrating St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. St. Patrick was born Maewyn Succat of an Italian father and a Scottish mother, sometime around 385 A.D., in Scotland.
At the age of 16 he was kidnapped by pirates and sold into slavery for six years in Ireland. After seeing a vision of a ship, St. Patrick planned his escape from Ireland to France, where he became a priest and later a bishop. He adopted the name of Patricus and remained in France for a number of years. As time went by, St. Patrick continued to be inspired by thoughts of bringing Christianity to Ireland. At the age of 60, upon his return, an Irish legend began.
It was said that he drove away all the snakes and toads from the land, while standing amid a field of shamrocks. Whether fact or fiction, the shamrock, a three-leaf plant, signifies the Holy Trinity to the Catholics and is still symbolic of the Irish and St. Patrick.
St Patrick died in 464 A.D. However, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated worldwide by parades, processions, and the “wearin’ of the green.” St. Patrick’s Day is a tradition for people of Irish descent and the expatriate Irish in other countries, as well as by many others who choose to be Irish “for a day.” St. Patrick is honored by expressing devotion and faith and recognizing the heritage of the patron saint of Ireland.
Remembering Our Ancestors
I’ve always been very proud of my Irish heritage. All my life I’ve felt pulled to the island by some invisible force, and it wasn’t until 2004 when my husband and I finally made the trip.
Every year, thousands of people from all over the world full fill their desires of returning to the land of their roots. Some people scoff at it but I believe there’s nothing wrong in learning more about where we came from. After all, if it weren’t for them, we would never be here, now would we.
On the other hand, some people prefer to dis-identify with their ancestors because of unpleasant things they may have done, either to them personally or historically, to other people on this earth.
Since the beginning of time good and bad has roamed the earth, but we surge ahead in effort to learn from our mistakes, comprehend, and show compassion and forgiveness when possible.
Like me, if you’ve felt compelled to know more about your family history or travel to the land of your origin, maybe there is a reason for this we have yet to discover. Not long ago, I finally understood why, for most of my life, I’ve felt so strongly about going to Ireland, but if I told you, you would never believe me! Let’s just say, it’s a familiar place.
I’ve posted a video by Celtic Thunder, one of my favorite groups. I saw them in concert last year in San Diego, and they were outstanding. I have to admit, they’re kind of cute too.