Tuesday, November 30, 2021
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Holiday celebrates patron saint

St. Patrick’s Day, celebrated on March 17, marks the anniversary of the saint’s death in the fifth century. The traditional Irish celebration includes attending church in the morning, and feasting and drinking in the evening.

Dinner is usually Irish bacon and cabbage, because the requirement of avoiding meat during Lent is lifted during this celebratory day.

St. Patrick was the patron saint and apostle of Ireland.

He is credited with bringing Christianity to the Irish people. It is said he explained the Holy Trinity using the three leaves of a shamrock, which is why the clover is included in celebrations.

The first parade held in honor of St. Patrick was held in the U.S. in the 1700s, with Irish soldiers marching through New York City. It is said the parade helped the soldiers connect with their Irish roots and fellow Irishmen.

Modern day celebrations in Dublin last multiple days and include parades, concerts, theater productions and fireworks.

The leprechaun, an Irish fairy who harbors a pot of gold, has no connection to St. Patrick, but is often brought up during St. Patrick’s Day celebrations as a symbol of Ireland. Wearing the color green shows a commitment to Ireland.

Although St. Patrick was born British, his religious work helped him become an integral part of Irish heritage.

mheiman@unews.com

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