St. Patrick’s Day, March 17
St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated March 17. This is the day to stuff yourself with corned beef and cabbage. If you want to be a true Irishman you might also consider adding Guinness, the dark stout beer from Ireland, to your menu. If you do not want a pint of beer you might, instead, replace it with Irish tea as you wish everyone, “Top o’ the morning and all the day through, the luck of the Irish is watching o’er you.” Do not forget to dress in green, and, of course, find a four-leaf clover to seal your luck for the day.
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrates Ireland’s Patron Saint
St. Patrick’s Day is a day to celebrate Ireland’s patron saint. Since so many people, with Irish roots, live outside the country it is celebrated worldwide. Some countries celebrate the day as a national holiday such as Ireland, the Emerald Isle, Newfoundland, and Labrador.
St. Patrick was from a rich family in Northern England or Southern Scotland born in about 385AD. He was probably called Maewyn Succat. When he was 16-years-old he was kidnapped by raiders. They took him to Ireland where he was a slave for six years. It is believed that he became a Christian during these years. He escaped to France where he studied in a monastery.
He later returned to Ireland where he converted pagans to Christianity. He then took the Christian/Roman name of Patricius. This name was later known as Patrick. He was appointed as the second bishop to Ireland. His job was to set up monasteries, churches and schools. His work continued for 30 years. He died on March 17 and he was later made a saint by the local church. The year of his death is disputed but it was around 461AD.
Why is St. Patrick’s Day celebrated? The reason is because Luke Wadding, a 17th century scholar, fought for March 17 to become a feast day in honor of the saint.