Patrick, the son of a deacon, was most likely a native Welsh-speaker. It's easy to forget his story. He was captured and enslaved in Ireland. He escaped, went to France, was ordained a priest, and eventually returned to Ireland as a missionary.
One cannot show greater love for former captors than sharing with them the love of God poured out for us in Christ Jesus, our Lord. In essence, St Patrick's Day is a religious day. If you use it as a reason to get piss-pants drunk, God bless you still, even though you've missed the point entirely, which is not to say, "Celebrate it like a Puritan." In any case, Venerable Matt Talbot, pray for us!
Happy St Patrick's. I am still kicking myself for letting the feast of Dewi Sant (St David of Wales- 1 March) pass without posting anything. Every day is a great to be Celtic, even those days when I am afflicted by Wales's own Rowan Williams, referring to his own experience, called "the Celtic gloom."
The two men I want to be like should I ever grow up are Rowan Williams and Owen Cummings.
I love this version of Bob's 'Redemption Song,' featuring his son Ziggy (who I've seen live) with, who else?, The Chieftains!
From Lúireach Pádraig or, in English, St Patrick's Breastplate:
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise