“Patrick, St (mid- or late 5th cent.), ‘Apostle of the Irish’. Patrick was born in Britain, the son of a local decurio (a member of a town council) called Calpornius, who was also a deacon of the church, and who had a property near the village (vicus) of Bannavem Taburniae, of which the site is unknown. Patrick was brought up as a Christian, though in no tradition of strong piety. At the age of 16, he was captured by Irish pirates and spent six years as a herdsman in Ireland. In his captivity, he turned earnestly to God and eventually received a Divine message that he was to escape. He made his way to some port 200 miles away, perhaps on the SE coast of Ireland, persuaded some sailors to give him a passage, and landed somewhere on the coast of Britain. After adventures in which he felt himself sustained and protected by Divine help, he returned to his kinsfolk, a changed man. He underwent training for the Christian ministry, which must have consisted mainly of learning a rather conservative rule of faith and acquiring an intimate knowledge of the Latin Bible. At some point, he went from Britain as ‘bishop in Ireland’ (his own phrase, Epistle § 1), and he spent the rest of his life there, evangelizing, conciliating local chieftains, and educating their sons, ordaining clergy, and instituting monks and nuns. One of his letters has survived, written in Latin to a British chieftain called Coroticus, whose identity is disputed. Towards the end of his life, Patrick wrote, also in Latin, a moving personal account of his spiritual pilgrimage, called his Confession, perhaps in response to a serious attack on his character and career which was certainly made on him at some point during his episcopate.”
|An Old Irish Blessing||In Time of Sorrow…|
|May love and laughter light your days,
and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours,
wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world
with joy that long endures.
May all life’s passing seasons
bring the best to you and yours!
|May you see God’s light on the path ahead
When the road you walk is dark.
May you always hear,
Even in your hour of sorrow,
The gentle singing of the lark.
When times are hard may hardness
Never turn your heart to stone,
May you always remember
when the shadows fall—
You do not walk alone.
|A Wish for a Friend||An Irish Prayer|
|Wishing you a rainbow
For sunlight after showers—
Miles and miles of Irish smiles
For golden happy hours—
Shamrocks at your doorway
For luck and laughter too,
And a host of friends that never ends
Each day your whole life through!
|May God give you…
For every storm, a rainbow,
For every tear, a smile,
For every care, a promise,
And a blessing in each trial.
For every problem life sends,
A faithful friend to share, For every sigh, a sweet song,
And an answer for each prayer.
The Shield of St. Patrick
Attributed to St. Patrick
Paraphrased by Cecil Frances Alexander
I bind unto myself today the strong name of the trinity, by invocation of the same, the Three in One, the One in Three.
I bind this day to me forever by power of faith Christ’s incarnation, his baptism in the Jordan river, his death on the cross for my salvation; his bursting from the spiced tomb, his riding up the heavenly way, his coming at the day of doom I bind unto myself today.
I bind unto myself today the power of God to hold and lead, His eye to watch, his might to stay, his ear to harken to my need, the wisdom of my God to teach, His hand to guide, his shield to ward, the Word of God to give me speech, His heavenly host to be my guard.
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, of whom all nature hath creation, eternal Father, Spirit, Word; praise to the God of my salvation, salvation is of Christ the Lord!
Patrick, and Ludwig Bieler. The Confession of St. Patrick. EBSCOhost. Grand Rapids, Mich: Generic NL Freebook Publisher. Accessed March 12, 2020. https://su.idm.oclc.org/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=2009156&site=eds-live.
 F. L. Cross and Elizabeth A. Livingstone, eds., The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), 1240.