[marq=left]Happy St. Patrick's day![/marq]
Don't get too drunk will you :wink:
Right, now the fun bit is over with, I thought I'd enlighten you all with the routes to this day. Pull up a pew, I'm about to spin you a gen dit :wink: ; (Don't all go up in arms about this, every one knows it different)
All around the world St. Patrick â€™s Day is celebrated as a tradition. Everything turns green, people dress up and one of the biggest Festivals is held in Dublin. But do we know the sole route to why this holiday is celebrated? Well let me share the story of St. Patrick with you all;
St. Patrick was born a Briton under Roman rule - the exact location of his birthplace isn't known but it was either the north of England or southern Scotland. As a young boy it was said that he was taken during the raids by Ireland in the UK by an man named Niall, a famous king of Ireland whose son Laoghaire was later to play a large part in Patrick's mission to convert Ireland to Christianity.
St. Patrick was of Roman decent, his mother and father were born into the Roman Empire. Patrick was then taken to Antrim, where he was sold to a local landowner called Meliuc, who put him to work as a shepherd. St. Patrick lived and worked as a Sheppard for 6 years before it was said he heard a voice, believing it to be god, comforting him and guiding him. Eventually Patrick found his way out of Ireland by ship, taking him all over Europe.
Patrick studied his Christian faith at the Lerin Monastery, situated on an island off the Cote d' Azur. On completing his studies he returned to Britain as a priest. He remained in Britain until a voice came to him in a dream. He recognised it as the voice of the Irish, which asked him, "We beseech thee, holy youth, to come and walk once more amongst us." At this point, Patrick's purpose in life was revealed to him - he would share Christianity with the Irish.
Upon returning to Ireland, he spread the word of his faith. This is how Ireland became a Christian culture (for those who are unsure, Ireland was a Druid population before hand), many stories tell of how he had used the 3 leave clover to explain â€˜The father, the son and the holy grailâ€™, whereas others believed him to have fled the snakes from Ireland into the sea.
In 441AD, Patrick returned to Rome to pay homage to the new Pope, Leo I. He was given relics from Saints Peter and Paul to which on his return to Ireland, he placed in his new chapel at the Metropolitan See in Armagh.
By the spring of 461 AD, at the age of 76, St Patrick was nearing his end. He died on March 17th after a long and fruitful life. To this day, St. Patrickâ€™s resting ground is said to be in Downpatrick, Co. Down, but like many tales, we shall never know!