Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Remember St. Patrick...Day

Why is an Italian boy like me excited about this very green, very Irish holiday in St. Patrick's Day? The reason is because Maewyn Succat or today as we know him St. Patrick (after becoming a Priest took a Christian name) is a Revolutionary that needs to be celebrated and remembered.

St. Patrick was British-born and was captured by pirates at the age of 16 and sold into slavery in Ireland. He was able to escape six years later, however he had a vision from God, where he heard the cries of the people of Ireland pleading for him to come back. He was moved by this vision of suffering and was struck with much compassion for the land that caused him much pain.

Sometimes our greatest tragedies can later be a catalyst for our greatest victories.

St. Patrick was one of the first recorded individuals who publicly took a stand against slavery, and by his death help put an end to slavery in Ireland around 461 AD.
(Interesting to note that it would take close to 1500 years later for slavery to be abolished in America.)

St. Patrick was passionate for those that many leaders in his day even Christian leaders overlooked; he was for women, the poor, and the marginalized.

He planted more than 300 churches and baptized over 120,000 Irishmen.

His humility and compassion lead him to be tremendously effective in Ireland and for the cause of Christ. "The early Irish Christianity planted by Patrick is much more joyful and celebratory [than its Roman predecessor] in the way it approaches the natural world," said by American scholar and writer, Thomas Cahill.

When we remember St. Patrick's Day may we remember a man...

Who was brave
Who was humble
Who was love the way Jesus was love.

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