St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patricks Day

Harris G., Staff Writer

     Every year on March 17th we spend 6 billion dollars on St Patrick’s Day. You’re probably familiar with the festivities: wearing green, being Irish, and drinking beer for the adults. But the history of this holiday is a bit more unknown. And as you may guess, it all revolves around the namesake of the holiday, Saint Patrick.

     St. Patrick didn’t begin how you may expect. He wasn’t Irish—he was actually born in Roman Britain—and he wasn’t named St. Patrick, his birth name being Maewyn Succat. Also, he wasn’t a Christian until he was a teenager. ALSO also, he’s not even a real saint of the Catholic church! But despite these confused origins, St. Patrick grew to become a Christian, and after a vision that he must do so, became the driving force in introducing Christianity to Ireland. Some say he baptized as many as 100,000 people.

     But all this doesn’t explain why we’re still celebrating his deeds centuries later. Well, it began in the 17th century in Ireland where his death-day was used as a celebration of Irish Christianity. This continued until the Great Famine in Ireland drove so many Irish citizens to the U.S that their celebration became something everybody took part in, regardless of whether they were Irish or not. Then, as with all holidays, in the modern area, it became commercialized into what we know it as today, hardly associated with Christianity at all for many people, and more associated with Irish culture, which is where most of its elements come from, such as the shamrock, likely used by St. Patrick to teach the native Irish about the Christian Holy Trinity, the color green, and more. So, now that you know the origins of this holiday, go out and celebrate it!