Who is St. Patrick?
I was just reading a little advertisement that said “We’re all Irish on St. Patrick’s Day!” Well, of course I know what that means. The media wants us to drink green beverages, eat corned beef with cabbage, and wear buttons that say “Kiss Me.”
This made me think about ways to bring back the faith element of this holiday, featuring St. Patrick himself. Since he lived in the 400’s, St. Patrick had great influence on the early Church. He was a missionary who helped make Christianity popular in Ireland. His success was based on the conversion of nobles and royalty. These were the people who had the most influence in their nation. The nobles set a faith-filled example for their subjects. St. Patrick was also responsible for encouraging people to become familiar with the written Word as it related to spreading the news of God’s love. Storytelling by memory had been the main means of evangelism, but St. Patrick brought the Bible and religious texts to the general population.
So why do we use leprechauns as a symbol of St. Patrick’s Day and not the Bible? I am not sure, but if we teach our “Wee Ones” about the real St. Patrick, they can be like him by spreading the Good News of God’s Love and reading His word!