March 17a

Legend of Saint Patrick

This is the story of Saint Patrick’s life is shrouded in legend and mystery, so only few facts can be gleaned from his writings. The only works which provide an insight into his life are his Confession and Letter to Coroticus. The combined volume is 120 pages.

It is probable that Patrick was born sometime in the third century, and passed away in the fourth century. Many believe that he was 120 years old, which is the same age of Moses. Patrick’s most active years were in the fourth century.

Patrick was born on the British mainland during Rome’s retreat from the island. Roman citizenship, he was also a Christian. Christianity was Rome’s state religion at the time. Patrick’s father was wealthy, and his grandfather was a priest. Patrick was a casual observer of his faith, giving only the minimal service required by society. Patrick’s life was changed after he was taken prisoner by Irish pirates in a raid. His age at the time of his kidnapping is unknown, although some historians believe he was around 14-16 years when he was abducted from his family.

Patrick was put in charge of his master’s livestock and spent months alone tending to the animals as a simple shepherd. He began to feel a pull towards God during this period and his faith strengthened every day. Patrick heard his voice after six years in captivity and was told by a voice that he would soon return home. A ship was already ready. After traveling 200 miles, he found a ship on the Irish coast and convinced the captain to allow him to board. Patrick was able to return home after three days of adventure.

Patrick was inspired to go to Ireland as a missionary by his vision after he returned from Europe. Patrick went to Europe for study, and was then ordained a priest. Saint Gremanus from Auxerre. Patrick went back to Ireland to lead the country to Jesus. He taught the Christian faith and built churches.

Patrick’s popularity drew attention, and he was accused of misusing funds, but he refuted those allegations and proved that he not only did not misuse funds but also gave away what he had. Patrick was killed in the fourth century. His death is celebrated. March 17. Every year. The year however is unknown.

Patrick is the subject of many myths, including the legend that he drove all the snakes out Ireland and used a clover to explain the doctrines of the Holy Trinity. They may be false, but they do add to the mythology of Patrick. Saint Patrick, they do not reflect historical fact. Patrick, the true legacy Saint Patrick is remembered for his relentless efforts in spreading the Christian faith to Ireland, and his influence on Ireland’s culture and people.