Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Coming from an Irish heritage, I wanted to wish you all a very happy St. Patrick's Day! I'm about to get my corned beef and cabbage cooking! Earlier this week, while making a St. Patrick's Day card for my 100% Irish grandmother, I came across an excerpt of "St. Patrick's Breastplate" and I thought it was worth sharing:

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself the Name,
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One and One in Three.
By Whom all nature hath creation,
Eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
Praise to the Lord of my salvation,
Salvation is of Christ the Lord.

Unfortunately, like most Christian celebrations, secularization seems to eventually take over the holiday, but I found it refreshing to read some of Patrick's original writings and thoughts. Patrick lived in England during the fifth century and was captured at age 16 by Irish raiders. He was then sold into slavery in Ireland. He eventually fled the country, but later returned as a Christian missionary and ordained Bishop. He died on March 17, 493.

"But after I reached Hibernia I used to pasture the flock each day and I used to pray many times a day. More and more did the Love of God, and my fear of Him and faith increase, and my spirit was moved so that in a day [I said] from one up to a hundred prayers, and in the night a like number; besides I used to stay out in the forests and on the mountain and I would wake up before daylight to pray in the snow, in icy coldness, in rain, and I used to feel neither ill nor any slothfulness, because, as I now see, the Spirit was burning in me at that time." - St. Patrick, from his Confessio.

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