few Catholic saints have been woven into the fabric of American culture like St. Patrick. In some ways, his importance and reasons for sainthood have been domesticated, but by remembering and rediscovering the hallmark saint we can aid the American project and stay true to what it means to celebrate his life every St. Patrick’s Day.
Way too often, the Catholic Church is viewed as out-of-touch for its fairy tales in the Bible or superstitious for its belief that the Eucharist is the body and blood of Jesus Christ. However, it is society that has accepted false understandings of what it means to remember St. Patrick. Orthodoxy, and sanity for that matter, mean we stay rooted in the truth. Unveiling the facts about this tremendous man of history is important when considering what has become of his celebration.
With the influx of Irish immigrants over the centuries to the United States, it became common for celebrations to arise on St. Patrick’s feast day. Boston had its first parade in 1737, and New York City had its first parade in 1762. These were days filled with championing Irish culture and customs, and of course, having some nice beer.
Now, St. Patrick’s Day has become an excuse for Irish families, and many others, to light up their homes and buy shamrock paraphernalia. The month of March has become green across the nation (even though blue was the original color associated with St. Patrick). It has also become inebriated.
St. Patrick’s Day is now an excuse for drunkenness, where grown men and women start drinking at 11:00 a.m. as they did in college. We all know there has to be more to this day than having drinks and eating corned beef. So what is the reason for St. Patrick’s Day?
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