At this point in the game, we may simply think of St. Patrick as a good excuse for a party, or the reason for a river and beer to be green for a day.
When your goal is to persuade a nation to believe as you do, you need a hero to convince them. How did the Catholic Church convert Ireland – a land with its own rich tapestry of Gods and Goddesses and magic everywhere?
Easy: everyone loves an underdog, and everyone loves their symbols.
Point in case is Patrick, the young slave who became a savior and cast out the snakes (remember the devil in the Garden of Eden?) from Ireland.
Clearly, Christianity could compete with the Celtic deities.
Today, I doubt we remember the slave boy who became a leader and a religious leader. But we pause for him on this day, and deck ourselves out in green to commemorate him.
I had to dig through my memory banks just for what is written above. The story of St. Patrick isn’t something I’ve dwelled upon or heard since I taught at a Catholic school.
I hope is was a happy celebration for you all. Blessings, and the luck of the Irish to each and every one of you.