Written by Brittany Pettinger of Elgin, MB

“If I have any worth, it is to live my life for God so as to teach these peoples; even though some of them still look down on me.” — St. Patrick

With St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, I thought it would be fitting to write something dedicated to the man it’s named after. All the information I have on the history of St. Patrick, I got while visiting Ireland in 2014.

Despite popular belief, St. Patrick was not actually from Ireland.

He was born in Roman Britain and didn’t come to Ireland until he was 16 – after being captured by Irish pagans. While held in captivity, he worked as a shepherd. Through prayer he converted to Christianity. He eventually escaped his captors, and later returned to Ireland as a missionary.

In the fall of 2014, I had the privilege of visiting Armagh, Northern Ireland, which has two cathedrals dedicated to St. Patrick. It was so amazing to get a glimpse of the mission he started in such an amazing country.

Never lose hope that you can bring change to others. The smallest of things can have the biggest impact. I highly encourage you to look up the stories of other saints (St. Nicholas and St. Valentine are great examples) and see how their actions spoke volumes. God created you to make a difference.

The world can be a scary place, but we have a protector, and with Him, we can do all things. I leave you with this Irish blessing and prayer. I hope that you find the same encouragement in it that I did.

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.