Friday, March 16, 2007
Christianity.... something else the Irish gave us.
Christianity is something else the Irish gave to us. You may not think so but had it not been for the hidden away Monks during the "Dark Ages" Christianity might not be the same today. While the rest of the world was fading away.......the Monks were working on hand written and highly ornate maniscripts done painstakenly by hand called the "Book of Kells." These were the four gospels of the Bible in Latin written in caligraphy!
Also don't forget that one great man in Ireland named Patrick. He was "Padraig" to them. He brought Christianity to Ireland which at that time was paganistic. He suffered many, many hardships and trials.
It took most of his life to convert the Island but he succeeded in destroying paganism.
Patrick spoke their language "Gaelic" so that enabled him to reach the Irish people.
The first thing he had to do was to make the people understand the doctrine of the Trinity, that there are three persons who make up one divine God - the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. To do this .....he used a simple little green tool.
The "Shamrock." A plant native to Ireland. He would pluck a shamrock from the ground and showed that the three leaves were on only one stem. Hence, an example they could understand.....three in one.......the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
The legend goes that Patrick "drove all the snakes out of Ireland"....but it's merely an analogy of what happened "Spiritually" when the evilness left and Christianity came in. Although when I was there in Ireland......they say there are no snakes. Isn't that the place to live!
Another great Irish symbol is the "Celtic Cross" and they are some kind of beautiful. You can't look at one anywhere on this earth and not think of Ireland.
Another Irish legend tells how St. Patrick created the first Celtic cross by drawing a circle over a Latin cross to incorporate a pagan moon goddess symbol. For an Irish Catholic, the circle in the Celtic cross may be a symbol of eternity and the endlessness of God's love. It can even represent a halo emanating from Christ
Even though Patrick is the "Patron Saint of Ireland" most people don't realize that Patrick was NEVER canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. In fact, he had a bit of a "falling out" with the Church before he died.
Two very good resources for learning more about these things are #1.A little book called "How the Irish Saved Civilization" by Thomas Cahill AND #2.An excellent video called "Patrick" by Faith and Values Media. I have them both and they are SO GOOOOD!
Especially if you love history like I do. Can you tell?