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THE PATRICK YOU NEVER KNEW


He didn’t chase the snakes out of Ireland and he may never have plucked a shamrock to teach the mystery of the Trinity. Yet St. Patrick well deserves to be honored by the people of Ireland—and by downtrodden and excluded people everywhere.


Some 1,500 years ago a teenage boy from what is now Great Britain was kidnapped and enslaved by marauders from a neighboring country. Not since Paris absconded with Helen of Troy has a kidnapping so changed the course of history.


The invading marauders came from fifth-century Ireland. The teenager they captured eventually escaped, but returned voluntarily some years later. In the meantime, he had become convinced that he was handpicked by God to convert the entire country to Christianity.


Apparently, he was right.


In the process of converting the primitive people of Ireland, however, the former slave experienced a conversion, too. In the years that followed, he not only shared God with the people of Ireland, but also grew in his understanding of God through them.


And so it was that a young Briton named Patricius died an Irishman named Patrick. And neither Ireland nor Christianity was ever quite the same.



SOURCE: By Anita McSorley. Http://www.americancatholic.org/Messenger/

Mar1997/feature1.asp



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