LIFE OF SAINT PATRICK
Birth and Early Life
St. Patrick was born in Britain into a roman family. At age 17, he was captured and carried into slavery in Ireland. He stayed in Captivity for a period of six years before reuniting with his family when he escaped from his master.
According to the confessions of St. Patrick, during those six years of captivity, he had his spiritual development.
He explained how the Lord had mercy on his youth and ignorance and afforded him the opportunity to be forgiven his sins and convert to Christianity.
While in captivity, he worked as a shepherd and strengthen his relationship with God through prayer eventually leading him to convert to Christianity.
St. Patrick studied in Europe principally at Auxerre, but is thought to have visited the Marmoutier Abbey, Tours and to have received the tonsure at Lerins Abbey. Saint Germanus of Auxerre, a bishop of western church, Ordained St. Patrick to priesthood.
St. Patrick crosses.
St. Patrick is known for two famous cross Pattee and Saltire.
The cross pattee has long been associated with Patrick for the reason that bishops’ mitres in Ecclesiastical herald often appear surmounted by a cross pattee. An example of these can be seen on the old crest of the brothers of Patrick.
As Patrick is the founding bishop of Irish church, the symbol may have become associated with him. Patrick is traditionally portrayed in the vestments of a Bishop, and his mitre and garments are often decorated with the cross pattee.
Saint Patrick saltire is a red saltire on a white field. It is used in insignia of the Order of saint Patrick, established in 1783.
St. Patrick Bell
The bell is also known as “the bell of the New Testament”. The bell is credited with working a Miracle. An ancient relic attributed to Saint Patrick is an iron bell that can be found on display at the National Museum in Dublin, Ireland.
The story behind it relates how Saint Patrick climbed to the top of a mountain now known as Crough Patrick.
There, in imitation of Jesus, he fasted for forty days.
During that time demons came and tormented him, but he stayed true to his faith.
As the evil entities grew more aggressive, he prayed to God, and finally drove them off using the bell.
St. Patrick Breastplate
A Hymn or Lorica which is attributed to Patrick because he usually places it close to his Chest during his Irish ministry in the 5th century.
Saint Patrick death date is not known but the Church accepted march 17 which is the Saint feast day to be his death date.
During the lifetime of St. Patrick, canonization was done on regional or diocesan level.
Soon after the death of people considered very holy, the local church affirmed that they could be liturgically celebrated as saints.
Therefore, Saint Patrick was not formally canonized as a saint.
Though other churches believes that He a saint in heaven and his name is also found in the List of Saint.
His Feast Day
Saint Patrick feast day is celebrated on the 17th March.
Among the miracles of the famous saint Patrick, these two stands out;
1. Using Shamrock in an illustrative parable: the shamrock is three-leaf plant that St. Patrick uses in teaching his audience about the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity.
2. Banishment of Snakes from Ireland: The best-known miracle attributed to Saint Patrick involves the banishment of snakes from Ireland.
The legend goes that he climbed to the top of a mountain overlooking the sea and ordered all the serpents in Ireland to assemble at his feet before he drove them into the water by beating a drum.
3. Raising of the Dead to life: It’s recorded that Patrick resurrected the dead at least 33 times.
In one case two daughters of the King of Dublin had died, and the King, who’d heard of Patrick’s miraculous abilities, sent for him.
The King promised Patrick that if he could bring the girls back to life he would convert to Christianity.
Patrick took the hands of the girls and appealed to God.
Suddenly the burial chamber was filled with light and the girls rose from death.
The King kept his word and was baptized.
From Saint Patrick, we can learn this few virtues
1. He lived a life of Prayer.
2. He Lived a life of trust in the Lord and His word as we always see him carrying the Word of God as His Breastplate.
3. He Lived a life of a Missionary: in this our time when we need more missionaries to proclaim the Goodnews, we can learn from St. Patrick that we are all called to a life of mission.
We should go out and witness for Christ by our life, words and actions.
St. Patrick’s Prayer
May the Strength of God pilot us.
May the Power of God preserve us.
May the Wisdom of God instruct us.
May the Hand of God protect us.
May the Way of God direct us.
May the Shield of God defend us.
May the Host of God guard us
Against the snares of the evil ones,
Against temptations of the world.
May Christ be with us!
May Christ be before us!
May Christ be in us,
Christ be over all!
May Thy Salvation, Lord,
Always be ours,
This day, O Lord, and evermore. Amen.
May God bless Us and help us to imitate the lifestyle of his saint, Patrick.