Saint Patrick’s Day is a very festive celebration in the United States with parades and pubs, shamrocks and Shepard’s pie.
But I am going to tell you some things about St. Patrick and his day that you may not know!
- 1. St Patrick, patron Saint of Ireland, is actually Maewyn Succat from the United Kingdom. He was born around 390AD to an aristocratic Christian family.
- 2. He was captured when he was around 16 and taken to Ireland where he was a slave. Maewyn escaped after 6 years of captivity and went back to England. He became a priest there and later returned to Ireland as a missionary.
- 3. The Shamrock was used by St. Patrick to teach the Irish about the Holy Trinity. Each leaf of the shamrock represented one of the trinity.
- 4. St. Patrick’s Day was invented by Irish-Americans to celebrate their heritage in the land of the free. Eighteenth-century Irish soldiers fighting with the British in the Revolutionary War held the first St. Patrick’s day parade. St. Patrick’s Day was first celebrated in Boston in 1737.
- 5. The first St. Patrick’s Day parade in the Irish Free State was held in Dublin in 1931, 200 years after it was first celebrated in the United States.
- 6. Wearing the color Green became a show of commitment to Ireland during the parades in the 19th Century. Chicago in 1962 carried that into a further show of solidarity by dying a portion of the Chicago River green.
- 7. On a normal day 5.5 million pints of Guinness is consumed around the world. On St. Patrick’s Day, that number rises to 13 million pints!
- 8. The Irish were so poor they could only afford beef and cabbage so it became a staple for the holiday even to this day.
In closing, I want to leave you with an old Irish blessing….
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!
~Cheryl Pastor, Social Media Specialist