The holy Patrick
Among the celtic-british Aristocracy of Britain were some christianized Families. From such arose St. Patrick, the Apostle of Ireland. Born in today’s southern Scotland, he was abducted as a teenager by irish Pirates and had to work in Ireland as a Shepherd. His Faith helped him to overcome this and finally return home. There he received the Vision that he was chosen to missionize the Irish, whereupon he was trained to become a Priest.
He returned to Ireland, where he successfully converted the Nobility. So says a legend!
The most reliable Information can be found in his own writings, especially the Confessio. It is said that he was actually Patricius and was the son of a roman Officer stationed in the province of Britannia and serving in the parish as Diaconus. He was already educated in the catholic Faith and was proud of his Religion and Education.
From the parental Estate, he was probably brought at the age of 16 by plundering Slavers to an unspecified place in Ireland, where he had to herd Sheep and found comfort in Christianity. Following Confessio, despite his hard Life in bondage, he learned to love the Land and its Inhabitants. Years later, an Angel is said to have told him that he should flee, whereupon he fled with merchants across the Sea and wandered with them for weeks a ruined, empty Land. Like the rest, this Place is not named in the Confessio, but it is believed that he became a Monk and a Priest. It is further assumed that he spent several years in a Monastery, which – as he mentioned “pagan Franks” – may have been in Gaul (France).
One Night he is said to have heard voices which he recognized as voices of the irish People calling him back to Ireland. In 432 Pope Celestine I. is said to have sent him as Bishop to Ireland. He founded Monasteries, Schools and Churches throughout the Country and carried out his missionary Work until his death (allegedly March 17, 461). When he died he is said to have converted thousands of Irish to Christianity.
Patrick brought not only his Faith but also Education! From then Stories were no longer transmitted orally, but written down. Presumably, he wrote his own life story, as well as a letter to the Soldiers of the Coroticus, in which he denounced in clear words a Massacre of Irish Christians by Warriors of a british Warlord. All Legends were at least written 100 years later. They say that during a Sermon he freed the island of all Serpents. Not only through Words, but also through the use of his episcopal Staff.
The expulsion of the Serpents is pictorial and is symbolic of the expulsion of pagan Beliefs and Demons. It is disputed whether and in which Aspects -including his Life Data- a factual core exists, and what this may contain.