March 17, 2017: ST. PATRICK
March 17, 2017: ST. PATRICK, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR
Prayer (from Collect)
O God, Who was pleased to send blessed Patrick, thy Bishop and Confessor, to preach thy glory to the Gentiles: grant, by his merits and prayers, that we may, through thy grace, be enabled to keep thy commandments. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
St. Patrick taught the Irish about the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, by showing people the shamrock, a three-leafed plant, using it to illustrate the teaching of three persons in one God. The shamrock has since become a central symbol for St Patrick's Day.
St. Patrick in 441 A.D., climbed to the summit and spent forty days and nights fasting and praying for the people of Ireland. Many Catholics are not familiar with the famous and holy mountain, located in what was traditionally known as "The Land of Saints and Scholars" (Ireland), called Croagh Patrick.
"It is easier to find men who have kept their innocence than to find any who have done fitting penance."
"St. Patrick's Mountain" (Croagh Patrick) is near the town of Westport. This famous 2,500-foot mountain is where St. Patrick in 441 A.D., climbed to the summit and spent forty days and nights fasting and praying for the people of Ireland. Catholic pilgrims have been climbing this for more than fifteen hundred years as an act of penance and meritorious good work. Every day, but Sunday, you will find pilgrims walking/climbing the rocky path up the side of Croagh Patrick. It is an Irish Tradition to climb the Croagh Patrick.
Catholics can gain indulgences at certain set times of the year by praying Paters, Aves and Glorias while performing prescribed penitential exercises at different stations along the rock strewn path, until hopefully they reach the summit of Croagh Patrick where there is a small chapel. (Note: certain prayers are required at the summit too). The ascent to the summit is quite difficult. A lot of people don't make it to the top.
(To see more holy Catholic pilgrimage sites and important places located within Ireland, the Emerald Isle, please visit: www.stcolman.com/pilgrimage.html)
Pray for us O Holy St. Patrick, glory of Ireland;
that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ!