Saint Patrick's Day is celebrated every year on March 17. It is a traditional Irish holiday, but people from all over the world enjoy the spirit of the Irish for the day and have a good time. Green is the color of the day, and if you're not wearing it, you might just get pinched. Fortunately, there are many shades of green
and lots of style ideas
on the Doll Palace if you need help.
The holiday gets its name from a Catholic Saint – St. Patrick. Patrick, or Maewyn, as he was called as a child, was not always a saint, however. For most of his youth, he was actually a pagan. Pagans practice religions other than Christianity. However, when he was taken as a slave around the year 400, Maewyn/Patrick found his faith and began practicing Christianity.
When he managed to escape slavery after six years, Patrick studied in a monastery for another twelve. He decided his mission in life was to covert all the pagans in Ireland to Christianity. When he was appointed Pope of Ireland, he got his chance.
The Miracles of St. Patrick
While in Ireland, Patrick would visit all over the country preaching about his religion and setting up schools and churches. He used shamrocks to illustrate the example of the Christian holy trinity, and the shamrock stuck. It became part of his image. Patrick is also said to have brought people back from the dead and to have even driven all the snakes out of Ireland. (Scientists are reasonably sure there were never any snakes in Ireland, however.)
After thirty years of mission work, and quite a few years of avoiding arrest by Celtic Druids, Patrick retired. He died on March 17, and that date is the official St. Patrick's Day in the Catholic Church and for the rest of the world as well.
Celebrating St. Patrick's Day
The first known celebration of St. Patrick's Day in America was in Boston in 1737. The holiday is usually celebrated with parades, plenty of green decorations, and quite a bit of Irish (or another country's) beer.
While few people get to take the day off school or work for Saint Patrick's Day, many celebrate it anyway. There are a lot of green shirts and outfits worn that day to avoid any pinching, and for adults, there might be a few drinks at the end of the day. Some cities host large parades and festivals, and those with rivers may even dye the river green as part of the celebration.
We are always up for a good time, and St. Patrick's Day offers a nice opportunity for fun. It's been a joyful holiday for years, and quite a few believe that the enthusiasm St. Patrick's Day gets every year has less to do with a particular Catholic saint, and more to do with the fact that the official start of spring and (hopefully) warmer weather is only three days away.