Saint Patrick’s Day—the spirited holiday celebrated by Irish and non-Irish patrons alike—is right around the corner. But, who is this Saint we annually commemorate with festive parades, pints of Guinness and green apparel?
Saint Patrick was born and raised in Britain until he was captured and held prisoner by Irish raiders at 16 years old. After six years in confinement, he escaped and returned to Great Britain where he became an ordained minister, according to history.com..
Later on, he returned to Ireland, believing that God asked him to minister to and convert the Irish, who were predominately pagan. Essentially, Saint Patrick was nothing more than a Christian missionary.
When he died on March 17, 461 AD, he was honored the same way any other Ireland resident would be. With time, though, his story evolved into a great legacy. Myths declaring him the first to bring Christianity to Ireland and driving snakes from Emerald Isle began to take shape and mark his significance.
It is fabled that he used a green shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity, which is why today the holiday is marked with the color green and shamrock symbols. Eventually, his name became known, and his death became an annual celebration among the Irish.
According to history.com, on the anniversary of his death, restrictions placed on meat and alcohol due to Lent season are lifted, which is why so many celebrate this religious holiday by feasting and dancing. Irish or not, be sure to get your green on, stop by one of the many festivals surrounding you and take part in this lively celebration.