Events are being held all over New Zealand and the world today to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day.
Saint Patrick’s Day is celebrated each year on March 17th.
The first St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the United States was held in Boston in 1737. The largest St. Patrick’s Day parade is in New York City.
Patrick was born in Britain in the year 387. His real name is Maewyn Succat. The name St. Patrick was given to him later in life by Pope Celestine.
At the age of sixteen he was kidnapped from his native land of the Roman British Isles by a band pirates, and sold into slavery in Ireland. Saint Patrick worked as a shepherd and turned to religion for solace. After six years of slavery he escaped to the Irish coast and fled home to Britain.
Legend has it that St. Patrick would use the shamrock to explain the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The word “shamrock” comes from the Gaelic word “seamrog” (In irish, it means “summer plant”) meaning “trefoil” (three leafed) or “little clover”.
In Arabia, it is called shamrakh. It was a sacred emblem in Iran and to the Persian triads. It is also a sacred plant among the Druids. Shamrock is the national flower of Ireland. Many Irish people wear a shamrock on St. Patrick’s Day.
St. Patrick died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland, on the 17 March, 461 A.D at the age of 76. He is believed to be buried in Downpatrick, County Down.