In this lesson we study the life of St. Patrick, learn some of his famous prayers, read some writings that were written by St. Patrick, and consider the impact St. Patrick had on the Faith in Ireland. His feastday is universally celebrated on March 17 and it is a Holy Day of Obligation in Ireland.Preview This Lesson
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Redeem me, O Lord, and have pity on me, for my foot stands on the right path. In the assemblies I will bless the Lord. Ps. 25:1. Do me justice, O Lord, for I have walked in innocence, and in the Lord I trust without wavering.
INTROIT from the Feast of St. Patrick (March 17)
In this lesson we study the life and teachings of St. Patrick, the godly bishop of Ireland. While it is unfortunate and even deplorable that so many in the secular world reduce this day to gluttony and drunkenness, the Church keeps today as a Holy Day.
In fact, in Ireland today is a Holy Day of Obligation. Up until the 1970s, bars were closed in Ireland on this day in observance of the fact that it was a Holy Day of Obligation, a day when Mass attendance is required and mundane affairs such as shopping is forbidden.
Throughout the world, those of Irish descent should rejoice today in the missionary work of the great St. Patrick who bore much sufferings in order to rid Ireland of Paganism and plant the Gospel of Christ in the Irish peoples.
As related in the Introduction of this lesson, St. Patrick overcame not only slavery but also a youth without religion. How many young people today can learn from the example of St. Patrick who, despite his early years away from God and the Church, redoubled his efforts when he was older and brought about an untold number of conversions.
No matter if we live in Ireland or not, all Catholics rejoice today in the life and example of St. Patrick.
Medieval culture was also very familiar with the life of St. Patrick. As related in the Golden Legend:
From "The Golden Legend," by Jacobus de Voragine, A.D. 1275:
S. Patrick on a day as he preached a sermon of the patience and sufferance of the passion of our Lord Jesu Christ to the king of the country, he leaned upon his crook or cross, and it happed by adventure that he set the end of the crook, or his staff, upon the king's foot, and pierced his foot with the pike, which was sharp beneath. The king had supposed that S. Patrick had done it wittingly, for to move him the sooner to patience and to the faith of God, but when S. Patrick perceived it he was much abashed, and by his prayers he healed the king. And furthermore he impetred and gat grace of our Lord that no venomous beast might live in all the country, and yet unto this day is no venomous beast in all Ireland.
After it happed on a time that a man of that country stole a sheep, which belonged to his neighbour, whereupon S. Patrick admonested the people that whomsoever had taken ... Please purchase this lesson to continue learning.
St. Patrick is part of the following course(s):