While I don’t believe in luck, my family does come from strong Irish roots. I believe in blessing, so when I go for the “wearin o’ the green” so that I don’t get pinched, I choose something with an Irish blessing on it instead of a “lucky horseshoe” to adorn my green. There are many Irish Blessings, and my favorites are the ones that emphasize that blessings come from God, not from luck. These days, Sait Patrick’s Day celebrations have little to do with the original purpose of the day. The day was originally a day to honor a man…Saint Patrick, who was known as the “Apostle of Ireland.” He was considered the primary patron saint of Ireland.

Saint Patrick originally came to Ireland very much against his will. He was about sixteen, when he was captured by Irish pirates from his home in Britain and taken as a slave to Ireland. He writes that he lived there for six years as an animal herder before finally escaping and returning to his family. You might have thought that after such an ordeal, he would never want to go back, but after becoming a cleric, he returned to spread Christianity in northern and western Ireland. Saint Patrick went on to become a bishop, but little is known about where he worked. Nevertheless, by the seventh century, he had come to be revered as the patron saint of Ireland. To think about what he went through, and then the very fact that he returned, definitely makes him a saint to me.

While partying and drinking green beer, parades and bars, and wearing green clothing all seem to be the normal way of celebrating these days, the reality is that this is technically a very religious holiday that is all about forgiveness, and a love of the people of Ireland. Some places hold parades and go all out with a party, but some people still feel more reserved about the day. Time changes things. It used to be that in Ireland, Saint Patrick’s Day was “celebrated” with church services, prayer, and a feast, but in modern times, there are a variety of types of celebrations, and while partying tends to cause a loss of the real reason for the day, it is a sign of the times, I suppose. However you celebrate, I hope you all have a great holiday. Happy Saint Patrick’s Day everyone.

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