Mar 19, 2011

St. Patrick

St. Patrick is very very very important here in Ireland, as you would probably already know. This week we have been learning his story, which involved his being captured from Britain by raiders, taken as a slave to Ireland, then escaping and return again to bring Christianity to the country.

Our celebration of the holiday looked a little different than usual.

On Wednesday, we did something called "Monastic Day." This was lead by our professor of Celtic Christianity, who split up our time doing various monastic-like things, one being practical work and labor - my job was peeling potatoes for dinner. We read different passages from the Bible, journaled, spent time in prayer, walked down to the Irish Sea, and sang sections of St. Patrick's hymn, "The Breastplate." We had liturgical readings, shared a meal together, and ended with a short service and communion. All of this, aside from the planned speaking, was done in silence. It was a beautiful and sacred time for us to truly experience what the life of a monk was like, and also to become stripped of everything that is comfortable, normal, and distracting in everyday life.

But on Thursday, we headed for Dublin. We went to the parade, a Gaelic football game, hurling match, and then dinner in Temple Bar area. And boy was it crazy. The streets were filled with green and drunkards. You could say we had plenty of entertainment for the night.

"I bind unto myself today
the power of God to hold and lead,
his eye to watch, his might to stay,
his ear to hearken, to my need;
the wisdom of my God to teach,
his hand to guide, his shield to ward;
the word of God to give me speech,
his heavenly host to be my guard.
- Breastplate, St. Patrick's hymn

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Great pictures, what an experience being in Dublin on ST. Patricks day..I would like the birds eye view where your standing, rather than than being down in the crowd with the masses and the green beer flying...ha ha..