The Gospel Brought Patrick Back to Ireland - Archbishop Brady
Primate's Reflection on a Patron Saint
ARMAGH, Northern Ireland, MARCH 17, 2006 (Zenit) - Here is the text of Archbishop Sean Brady's message for St. Patrick Day's. The 66-year-old archbishop is primate of all Ireland.
* * *
Last week a group of the Holy Spirit Congregation came to Armagh on pilgrimage in preparation for the celebration of St. Patrick's Day. Among the prayers they offered was Patrick's own famous prayer for perseverance in Ireland.
It begins with the immortal words: "My only prayer to God is that it may never happen that I should lose His people which He won for himself at the end of the earth" ("Confession of Patrick," No. 58). These words remind me of the question posed by Jesus in the Gospel, "When the Son of Man comes again will he find faith?"
St. Patrick's Day unites Irish people all over the world. For Patrick has become at once a symbol of Irish history and of Irish heritage. But simply to reduce Patrick to a symbol of that kind, worthy as it may be, without any reference to his own Christian faith distorts the truth and in no way does justice to the real stature of the man.
Patrick was a migrant, not once but twice, to our land. Despite his rather scary first experience, amazingly Patrick did return but he himself makes it quite clear why he did so. "Before God and His holy angels I solemnly and gladly swear that I had never any motive other than the Gospel and its promises to go back to that nation from which previously I had only barely escaped" ("Confession," No. 61).
The Gospel of Jesus Christ and the promises which that Good News contains brought Patrick back to Ireland. I believe that any authentic celebration of St. Patrick's Day must somehow remember and celebrate that fact. A celebration that belittles or ridicules the values of that Gospel surely offends the man whose memory it is meant to honor.
Patrick describes himself as a "rustic," an "untaught refugee." But mysteriously in the providence of God, this "rustic" was chosen in preference to many others who were apparently better prepared. His choice had nothing to do with his culture or his education but it had everything to do with his own personal faith and with the fact that Patrick's God meant everything to him.
Next week, Intercultural Week is being celebrated. It is being organized by the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland in conjunction with the National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism in Ireland. The week will focus on encouraging a greater involvement and a greater sense of belonging for people from minority ethnic backgrounds.
The civil law lays down the basic standards but something more is needed to build a society that is truly inclusive, a society that is welcoming and respectful of people of different cultures, languages and traditions.
I would venture to suggest that what is really needed is the proclamation and the living of the truth of Christ -- a truth brought by Patrick to our land -- the truth of Christ who educates consciences and teaches the authentic dignity of every human person. The golden rule from Christ was: "Treat others as you wish them to treat you." Is there any better recipe for building an inclusive society?
+ Sean Brady
Archbishop of Armagh
http://www.catholic.org CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000
Saint, Patrick, Ireland, Brady
More Catholic PRWire
Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718
A Recession Antidote
Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell
Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell
Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Franchising to Evangelize
Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Three words to a deeper faith
Relections for Lent 2009
Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell
World Food Program Director on Lent
Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Glimpse of Me
The 3 stages of life
Sex and the Married Woman
A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Modernity & Morality
Just a Minute
Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Edging God Out
Burying a St. Joseph Statue
George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell
Easter... A Way of Life
Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
by Catholic Online
- St. Fillan: Saint of the Day for Friday, January 19, 2018
- Daily Readings for Friday, January 19, 2018
- Why are the youth leaving the Church?
- Pope Francis: Faith is an adventure!
- Daily Reading for Saturday, January 20th, 2018 HD Video
- Jobless claims historic low! - Why workers are getting raises this ...
- Jobless claims are down - what does that mean for workers? HD Video
- Daily Reading for Friday, January 19th, 2018 HD
- North and South Korea agree to march together at the Olympics with first ever joint team HD
- CDC: Swine flu joining killer influenza outbreak, expected to become more severe HD
- Daily Reading for Thursday, January 18th, 2018 HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
The California Network
Inspiring streaming service
Learn the Catholic way
Teacher lesson plans & resources
Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education