I have a number of Irish friends from accross the sea, born and raised on the "emerald isle." Some things that irritate them about the way we here in America celebrate St. Patrick's Day, are; the non religious aspect of our American way, and the foolishness of some of our limited knowledge of true Celtic heritage. The Ancient Order of Hibernians,(AOH)for example, should be consulted on proper and more traditional ways of dress and customs for this event.
St. Patrick's Day should not be just a beer drinking fest with rowdy goings on. It should be much more than that, with more emphasis on native foods etc. However, it IS nice to see the celebration of a mass at St. Joseph the Worker Parish, to kick off the day of the parade, which is a great way of doing it.
One pet peeve that the native Irish people resent is the faux paux of the incorrect nickname, "St.Paddy's Day." There are no D's in the name Patrick. Everyone,(including the newspapers) do it. Why not get it right? It is St. Patty's. St. Patrick explained the Trinity of God by using the shamrock as a symbol, with it's 3 sides. However, Patrick was born Maewyn Succat in Scotland around 387 A.D., but later became a priest and took the name of Patrick as his Christian name.
The Italians have every right to claim St. Patrick as their own, as much as the Irish, and certainly ALL Roman Catholics and indeed Christians. Patrick, though born in Scotland as history shows, was really the son of Roman parents, Calpurnius and Conchessa, who were living in Britain to watch over colonies. At the young age of 14 Patrick was captured in a raid, and brought to Ireland until he escaped back to Britain and his family at age 20. He later became a bishop and took the Gospel to Ireland, which at the time was a land of Druids and Pagans. He converted chieftains and entire kingdoms acquiring a large following of disciples. He spent 40 years roaming Ireland converting people, and built Ireland's first church at Saul, where he later died. Hence, the strong Irish following and also becoming their patron saint.
Frank J. Fedele
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom