Monday, March 17, 2008

...and then there's the Irish in me!

I liken myself to Heinz 57 when it comes to my heritage... a mix of all the good varieties! Yesterday I went to my folks' place and celebrated both holidays. Mom made corned beef (no cabbage) and we had potatoes & carrots to go along with it. It was very good! Today we celebrate with a green beer and the Irish part of my heritage.

A friend sent me the following trivia today so I thought I would share it here:

Patrick was quite successful at winning converts. And this fact upset the Celtic Druids. Patrick was arrested several times, but escaped each time. He traveled throughout Ireland, establishing monasteries across the country. He also set up schools and churches which would aid him in his conversion of the Irish country to Christianity.

His mission in Ireland lasted for thirty years. After that time, Patrick retired to County Down. He died on March 17 in AD 461. That day has been commemorated as St. Patrick's Day ever since.

One traditional icon of the day is the shamrock. And this stems from a more bona fide Irish tale that tells how Patrick used the three-leafed shamrock to explain the Trinity. He used it in his sermons to represent how the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit could all exist as separate elements of the same entity. His followers adopted the custom of wearing a shamrock on his feast day.

Today, people celebrate the day with parades, wearing of the green, and drinking beer. One reason St. Patrick's Day might have become so popular is that it takes place just a few days before the first day of spring. One might say it has become the first green of spring.

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