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St. Patrick...and his Walking Stick?

Christian Sweitzer on
St. Patrick...and his Walking Stick?
St. Patrick’s Day is March 17th . 

Even if you aren’t Irish, it’s a great day to remember the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick, and celebrate the Emerald Isle. Chicago has gone so far as dye their river green to celebrate ‘St. Patty’s’, while across the globe, Irish pubs may offer green beer for washing down platters of Irish Stew or corned beef and cabbage.

Let’s reflect for a moment on the Saint who started it all. 

Patrick and his...Walking Stick? According to Wikipedia, Patrick was born in Britain and captured by Irish pirates at age 16. He was enslaved in Ireland for six years before escaping home to Britain. He credits his time of capture as being years of spiritual growth. After studying for the priesthood and having a vision, he returned to Ireland as a missionary, traveling on foot with an ash wood walking stick in hand.  Patrick (and other Christian missionaries) were seen by locals hostile to them:

Across the sea will come Adze-head, crazed in the head,
his cloak with hole for the head, his stick bent in the head….

Legends about St. Patrick include his use of the shamrock to explain the triune God, and his driving snakes out of Ireland (the legend believed to be a reference to Moses’ staff turning into a snake before Pharaoh).

Another endearing legend is that Patrick planted his ash wood walking stick into the ground, where it grew into a living tree!


Erin Go Bragh (Ireland Forever!)
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