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St Patrick’s Day

March 17, 2014

Saint Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. St Patrick’s Day is March 17.

St Patrick is traditionally associated with the Shamrock plant, which he used to explain the concept of the Trinity.

St Patrick’s value doesn’t really come from the historical details but from the inspiration of a man who returned to the country where he had been a child slave, in order to bring the message of Christ.

Facts in brief

  • St Patrick really existed
  • Taken to Ireland as a slave at age 16
  • Escaped after 6 years
  • Became a Christian priest, and later a Bishop
  • Returned to Ireland as a missionary
  • Played a major part in converting the Irish to Christianity
  • Some of his writings survive, the Confessio and the Letter to Coroticus

Doubtful extra facts in brief

  • Born in 387 AD in Scotland, in Kilpatrick
    • alternative sources suggest he was born at Banwen in Wales
  • His original name was Maewyn Succat; he became Patrick when he became a bishop
  • Studied in France at the monastery of St Martin’s in Tours
  • Went to Ireland in 432 AD
  • Died either in 461 AD, or 493 AD (unlikely)
  • Taught by Saint Germaine