St Patrick, the Patron Saint of Ireland.
Not a native son, at age 16 he was brought to Ireland as a slave, from either Scotland or Wales, and employed as a shepherd. Upon his escape he had a vision and began spreading the word of Christianity throughout Ireland until his death on March 17, 461. It is also believed that he drove all the snakes from Ireland although scientists now believe that snakes never actually existed there.
Luke Wadding, an Irish Franciscan friar, with persistent effort, was able to turn March 17 into a feast day honouring St. Patrick. The first Feast of St. Patrick was observed in the early 17th century; however, the first parade was not held until 1737 in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
Today St Patrick’s Day is celebrated world-wide. Many of the world’s most famous buildings and landmarks are temporarily green in honour of this day.
The colosseum in Rome, the Great Sphinx and Christ the Redeemer in Rio are just a few more examples.
Parades are held in many major cities and everyone is encouraged to wear something green and become an honorary Irishman on March 17th.
In modern times the things most often associated with St. Patrick’s Day are shamrocks, leprechauns and or course Beer. Parades are held in many cities with local taverns and bars serving green beer in honour of the day.
Guinness Beer, the most famous of Irish brews, has created special Guinness Recipes to inspire your St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Not to be outdone, Ireland’s official website has created a collection of recipes from noted Irish establishments and they are available here Irish Recipes
We hope you enjoy your own celebration on this special day and try one of the new dishes above with your friends.