St. Patrick's Day
“Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1)
Saint Patrick was a 5th-century Catholic Bishop in Ireland. Known as the "Apostle of Ireland", he is the Patron Saint of Ireland, according to Catholic tradition. The quote above, written by Paul, was the essence of St. Patrick’s ministry. He lived to emulate Jesus.
Patrick's history cannot be verified with certainty but, it is widely held that he was active as a missionary and Bishop in Ireland during the second half of the fifth century. He is generally credited with being the first Bishop of Armagh, Ireland, in what is now Northern Ireland.
While I don’t agree with the Catholic tradition of imparting the title of “Saint” to people for their good works, I do understand and respect the tradition. The Bible calls all who are born again children of God – Saints. Unfortunately, many that profess Christ as Lord fail to live up to the title Saint. Even though Patrick was captured as a boy in English and sold into slavery in Ireland. St. Patrick always tried to be as like Christ as he could be. After his escape back to England, and his education and ministry training were complete, he returned to Ireland to serve as a Priest and Bishop, leading people to Christ and showing a wonderful example of Christian character.
I celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, not necessarily to celebrate Patrick, although he was a very admirable example of a Christian, but to celebrate my heritage. Part of my genetic make-up, my blood line, is Irish. According to my mother, my great grandfather was a, “red headed Irish Sheriff who married an Indian girl”. So I’m at least 1/8 Irish and 1/8 American Indian, but I probably have more Irish heritage than just that 12.5 percent. Whatever my pedigree, I love my Irish heritage and enjoy St. Patrick’s Day.
This St. Patrick’s day, I’m going to celebrate the true meaning and spirit of the day. I’m going to live as – like Christ – as possible.