Sunday, December 17, 2017

Patron Saint

StPatrick

St.Patrick is the Patron Saint of Ireland, and of our Church.

There are many legends and stories about St.Patrick but it is believed he was born in Scotland around the year 387. His parents were Calpurnius and Conchessa who were Romans living in Britain in charge of the colonies.

When he was about 16 years old, Patrick was captured during a raiding party and taken to Ireland as a slave to herd and tend sheep and pigs, probably among the bogs and hills of Antrim. During his four years of captivity he thought about God more and more and his belief was a great comfort to him. He began to experience dreams and one night he awoke with a voice telling him to return to Britain and that a ship was waiting for him. Believing his dream he escaped and set off for the coast where he found a ship which took him back home.

Reunited with his family he lived at home for a while but in another dream he heard the Irish people calling him back to Ireland “Come back, holy boy, and walk among us once more”. He made up his mind he must return and preach Christianity to the Irish and began his training as a Priest. He was ordained by St.Germanus, Bishop of Auxerre and later was ordained Bishop. He later sailed to take the Gospel to Ireland arriving in 433 at Slane.

Patrick began preaching the Gospel throughout Ireland converting many people. He and his disciples preached and converted thousands and began building churches all over the country. He worked many miracles and wrote of his love for God in Confessions. After years of traveling and living in poverty he died on March 17th 461.

St.Patrick was a humble, pious and gentle man whose love and devotion and trust in God is a shining example to each one of us.

One famous story about St.Patrick is how he used the leaf of the shamrock to explain the mystery of the Trinity. It is because of this that all Irish wear a shamrock on St.Patrick’s day.

The beautiful prayer of St. Patrick, popularly known as “St. Patrick’s Breast-Plate”, is supposed to have been composed by him in preparation for this victory over Paganism. The following is a literal translation from the old Irish text:

	I bind to myself today
	The strong virtue of the Invocation of the Trinity:
	I believe the Trinity in the Unity
	The Creator of the Universe.

	I bind to myself today
	The virtue of the Incarnation of Christ with His Baptism,
	The virtue of His crucifixion with His burial,
	The virtue of His Resurrection with His Ascension,
	The virtue of His coming on the Judgement Day.

	I bind to myself today
	The virtue of the love of seraphim,
	In the obedience of angels,
	In the hope of resurrection unto reward,
	In prayers of Patriarchs,
	In predictions of Prophets,
	In preaching of Apostles,
	In faith of Confessors,
	In purity of holy Virgins,
	In deeds of righteous men.

	I bind to myself today
	The power of Heaven,
	The light of the sun,
	The brightness of the moon,
	The splendour of fire,
	The flashing of lightning,
	The swiftness of wind,
	The depth of sea,
	The stability of earth,
	The compactness of rocks.

	I bind to myself today
	God's Power to guide me,
	God's Might to uphold me,
	God's Wisdom to teach me,
	God's Eye to watch over me,
	God's Ear to hear me,
	God's Word to give me speech,
	God's Hand to guide me,
	God's Way to lie before me,
	God's Shield to shelter me,
	God's Host to secure me,
	Against the snares of demons,
	Against the seductions of vices,
	Against the lusts of nature,
	Against everyone who meditates injury to me,
	Whether far or near,
	Whether few or with many.

	I invoke today all these virtues
	Against every hostile merciless power
	Which may assail my body and my soul,
	Against the incantations of false prophets,
	Against the black laws of heathenism,
	Against the false laws of heresy,
	Against the deceits of idolatry,
	Against the spells of women, and smiths, and druids,
	Against every knowledge that binds the soul of man.

	Christ, protect me today
	Against every poison, against burning,
	Against drowning, against death-wound,
	That I may receive abundant reward.

	Christ with me, Christ before me,
	Christ behind me, Christ within me,
	Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
	Christ at my right, Christ at my left,
	Christ in the fort,
	Christ in the chariot seat,
	Christ in the ship,
	Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,
	Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks to me,
	Christ in every eye that sees me,
	Christ in every ear that hears me.

	I bind to myself today
	The strong virtue of an invocation of the Trinity,
	I believe the Trinity in the Unity
	The Creator of the Universe.

St Patrick Quotes.

Before I was humiliated I was like a stone that lies in deep mud, and he who is mighty came and in his compassion raised me up and exalted me very high and placed me on the top of the wall.
~Saint Patrick

Christ beside me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me.
~Saint Patrick

I am Patrick, a sinner, most uncultivated and least of all the faithful and despised in the eyes of many.
~Saint Patrick

If I be worthy, I live for my God to teach the heathen, even though they may despise me.
~Saint Patrick

If I have any worth, it is to live my life for God so as to teach these peoples; even though some of them still look down on me.
~Saint Patrick

No one should ever say that it was my ignorance if I did or showed forth anything however small according to God’s good pleasure; but let this be your conclusion and let it so be thought, that – as is the perfect truth – it was the gift of God.
~Saint Patrick

That which I have set out in Latin is not my words but the words of God and of apostles and prophets, who of course have never lied. He who believes shall be saved, but he who does not believe shall be damned. God has spoken.
~Saint Patrick

The Lord opened the understanding of my unbelieving heart, so that I should recall my sins.
~Saint Patrick