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Facts On St Patricks Day

Explain the facts on St Patricks Day. Who was Saint Patrick and did he chased the snakes from Ireland or is that just a myth? How did leprechauns become part of St Patricks Day?

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 ---Fred on 3/9/07
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PS: Most Americans' views of leprechauns are influenced by FINIAN'S RAINBOW and DARBY O'GILL AND THE LITTLE PEOPLE--images that do NOT conincide with the classical Irish view of them.
---Jack on 10/6/08

Oh dear--just seeing this title, I have a sudden craving for corned beef or at least a ruben sandwich lol :D YUMMY!! :)
---Mary on 9/11/07

St Patrick was originally from England. He was captured and made a slave in Ireland tending to sheep. He was always Catholic. He escaped Ireland but later came back as a missionary. Driving snakes out of Ireland is a myth. He did use the 3 leaf clover to explain the trinity. Leprechauns are part of ancient Irish history and have nothing to do with St Patrick.
---grace3869 on 9/11/07

Before the Reformation, Christians were either Catholic or Orthodox or heretics. And Jack, the teachings were identical to the Orthodox because we were all one church then. Even now the differences are only slight - the Patriarch of Constantinople disagreed with one line in the Nicene Creed and decided that this was sufficient to split. The roots go back further than that, but only over a power struggle not doctrine.
---lorra8574 on 3/14/07

** he was neither, he would have been a celtic christian.**

Celtic Christianity was identical with Orthodoxy.
---Jack on 3/14/07

he was neither, he would have been a celtic christian. before rome got a hold of the church in these islands.
and i don't agree with the quiz answer that his parents were likely not celts. just because they held estates in roman britain doesn't mean they weren't celts, imho.
---joby on 3/12/07

**Actually Jack, St. Paddy was Catholic, the Orthodox Church did not form its own denomination officially until a few centuries after this saint died.**

Actually, lorra, the Roman Church (as well as most of the west) fell away from Orthodox Catholic unity in 1054, which was several centuries, not several years, after St. Patrick.
---Jack on 3/12/07

I think it is funny that the Orthodox and Catholics are fighting over which St. Patrick is he's from the year 461ad. and the East west split didn't happen till around 1000 from my understanding. so he's both. sure he's from the west or the latin side of the church but that doesn't mean that he isn't orthodox any more than it means he's catholic. I'm pretty sure St. Patty would be upset with the fighting and bickering within the churches to care. he'd probably drive some snakes out of the church today.
---Jared on 3/11/07

Actually Jack, St. Paddy was Catholic, the Orthodox Church did not form its own denomination officially until a few centuries after this saint died. Further, Orthodox was primarily in the East and Catholic was primarily, though not exclusively, in the West which is includes Ireland. St. Patrick is of the Roman or Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, as opposed to the Eastern Rite of the Catholic Church which is also in the East with the Orthodox Church.
---lorra8574 on 3/11/07

So you goin to County Gal, me ladd. God bless
---. on 3/11/07

who's saint patrick? and what's a saint patrick's day?
---Eloy on 3/11/07

Jack explained it.

Ireland is the Emerald Isle. Warm Irish smiles, welcoming townsfolk, sheep-dotted meadows, and verdant hills.

The Irish have a passion for their land and they are delightful company. After a rain, when the sun shines through the large raindrops, you will see all the colors of rainbow. Country cottages, thatched roofs, strawberry scones and Irish stew.

On March 17th, I'll be taking a trip down memory lane. I'm going to Owenriff River, Oughterard, County Galway.
---Raine on 3/10/07

**He was always Catholic.**

Actually, Grace, St. Patrick was Orthodox.
---Jack on 3/10/07

St.Patrick. He was a preacher who travelled around Ireland spreading Christianity. There are many legends associated with him. Including our lack of snakes - actually due our climate/geology. Fairy folk, banshees etc.. are old irish folklore not linked to him. USA has a Hollywood view of Irish culture, many people in Ireland don't observe St.Patricks day. In the North it has been associated with sectarianism. Some people travel from here to New York to see the parade we have nothing quite like it here.
---Khadijah on 3/10/07

I don't need to add to St. Patrick's info here, but I would like to point out that sometimes strange things happen, like the Easter Bunny bringing painted eggs at Easter. At least we can try to sort that out by relating both bunnies and eggs to the new life of the Resurrection, even though they sprouted from Pagan roots. I leave leprechauns to the fairy tales, and the green beer to college kids.
---lorra8574 on 3/9/07

St. Patrick was an Briton Christian (some say French), son of a deacon, who was kidnapped and sold as a slave to Irish pagans. His faith never wavered, and eventually he escaped to France. But he felt a burden for his erstwhile captors and was eventually consecrated as the first Bishop of Ireland, to which land he returned with a group of missionaries.
---Jack on 3/9/07

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Snakes are a symbol of demons and evil. It is not hard to see that "driving the snakes away" is a figurative way of saying how by his labors he snatched people from the grip of Satan and won them for Christ.

However, St. Patrick's day has become a celebration of Irish ethnicism (including wannabee Irish), and leprechauns are part of Irish folklore. They have as much to do with the real St. Patrick as elves on the North Pole have to do with the real St. Nicholas.
---Jack on 3/9/07

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