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St. Patrick's Day is celebrated annually on March 17 in many countries around the world. In 2023, the date of the Christian holiday falls on a Friday. The celebration was of particular importance in Ireland, since the saint is considered the patron saint of the country. The holiday has gone beyond national borders, is included in the Orthodox calendar, has found admirers in many countries where the Irish live. In the church calendar, St. Patrick's Day falls on March 30, according to the new style. The celebration of events related to Irish culture is usually held in the second half of March.

Meaning of the holiday

The special date is associated not only with the Christian teaching that Patrick preached in Ireland, but also with the cultural heritage of the country. The saint is recognized as the founder of written literature, and the Irish call March 17 the holiday of the soul.

According to legend, Christianity came to the island of pagans thanks to Patrick. The missionary sermons of the Baptist led to the creation of communities of believers, the construction of churches, the conversion of indigenous people without war, although Christianity was planted around with bloodshed and sacrifices.

About Patrick's life

The Saint was named Mavin Sukkat at birth. He was born, presumably, in the 80s of the 4th century in Britain. At 16, the young man wassold into slavery, taken to Ireland. Work as a shepherd, contemplation of the blue sky, ocean expanses filled his soul with faith, thoughts of humility, he considered his six-year slavery a punishment for a past life without spiritual baggage.

One day, Mavin heard a voice promising an early release, a return home. He decided to escape, someone unknown from above led him along the sea to the port. The young man managed to get on a ship going to Britain. Another month I had to walk to my settlement.

Later, the pursuit of a theological education led Mavin to Gaul. Over time, he became a priest, received the rank of deacon, the name of Patricius, or Patrick. Once a church minister felt a call from above to return to Ireland, followed him. It is known that in 432 Patrick, being a bishop, arrived on a pagan island.

About missionary work

The clergyman devoted 30 years of his life to Ireland, opened up to 600 churches, converted 120 thousand inhabitants of the country to the new faith. The Irish accepted Christianity because the bishop's sermons impressed, convinced, reached people's hearts.

Patrick was able to convey Christian dogmas with simple examples. So, the bishop illustrated the idea of the Holy Trinity on clover leaves on one stem. The shamrock has become a symbol of Ireland, depicted on the coat of arms. Ordinary residents kept leaves of plants from their native places in amulets, considering them to be amulets.

Uneducated and warlike population with local rulers, the Celtic Druids often resisted the missionary. Patricksurvived beatings, robbery, imprisonment. But the number of Christians increased, faith grew stronger. In the city of Arma, a priest founded a cathedral, a monastery. Saint Patrick became the first archbishop. Currently, Armagh remains the center for Irish Catholic spiritual leaders.

Celebration traditions

St. Patrick's Day is widely celebrated in many cities on different continents. In our country, celebrations were first held in 1992 as part of the Irish Culture Festival. Mass processions, parades of participants in green suits of all shades are a tradition of celebration. The main attribute in clothing is a trefoil, worn in buttonholes, as a symbol of good luck, involvement in Irish culture. Elements of outfits are made in the form of a clover leaf - mantles, scarves, various decorations.

The event is usually celebrated cheerfully, joyfully. Irish music, dancing, fair mood capture everyone. At the festival in Moscow, which is held annually on the Arbat and in Sokolniki, bagpipe orchestras perform, dance shows unfold. Theaters bring together fans of Irish dramaturgy, cinemas - spectators for showings of the best Irish films.

Beer parties have become an unofficial attribute of the holiday. In bars and pubs, lovers drink a lot of foamy drink, which is welcomed on the feast of St. Patrick. Popular dishes of the celebration are potato pancakes, stewed cabbage with bacon, shamrock-shaped pastries.

In Ireland, the holiday is declared a day off, celebrated with services in churches, the movement of pilgrims to the mountain,where Patrick, according to legend, drove away all the snakes that prevented him from reading prayers. Parades and feasts dedicated to the beloved saint are held for several days.

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