Homily for St. Patrick’s Day, Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul, Ennis
A feast day of National and International Celebration.
Today, the feast of our National Patron, Lá Fhéile Pádraig is a day to celebrate so much. It’s a great day in which we celebrate what it means to be Irish and what it means to have faith. It doesn’t matter whether you are at home or abroad the feast of St. Patrick is observed with delight and celebration. Lá mór cheiliúradh atá againn inniu sa mbaile agus i gcéin!
Déanann muid ceiliúradh inniu ar Lá fhéile Pádraig ar chultúr agus oidhreacht na hÉireann, An Creideamh, Ceol, Rince, Amhránaíocht, Filíocht, Teanga, chomh maith le cluichí Gaelacha, Peil, Iománaíocht agus liathróid láimhe.
Parades and Sporting Occasions
St. Patrick’s day has become synonymous in recent years, apart from parades with the club All Ireland Gaelic finals, always a great spectacle and this year we wish our neighbouring county of Galway all the best in both hurling and football!
Celebration of Faith!
Of course one of the main reasons we gather in this Holy location, the Cathedral of the great apostles in faith, Peter and Paul is to celebrate the man who brought the treasure of the Christian faith to our land way back in the fifth century, St. Patrick, himself. Cuimhníonn muid ar Naomh Pádraig, guíonn muid chuige agus tugann muid omós cuí dó!
Pádraig Mór na hÉireann
In the Irish Tradition Patrick is not so much known as Saint Patrick, but Pádraig Mór na hÉireann. The Great Patrick, his greatness in bringing us the treasure of the faith! Go dtuga Pádraig Mór na hÉireann a bheannacht dúinn ar an lá speisialta seo!
Spirituality of St. Patrick
We are lucky to have in both the precious documents The Confessions of St. Patrickand his Letter to Corroticusa window or insight into his faith and Spirituality. Creideamh agus Spioradáltacht Naomh Pádraig, sna cáipéisí, ársa beannaithe sin.
Faith in Jesus Christ
In these two documents we capture a sense of his love for and phenomenal faith in Jesus Christ. Creideamh in Íosa Críost.
Shamrock and the Trinity
We get a sense of his love for the expression of God as Trinity and of course the symbol of the shamrock is used so often to explain this deep mystery of the way God relates to us. Rúndiamhar na Tríonóide! Teaghlach an ghrá á léiriú dúinn tríd an Athar, Mac agus Spiorad Naomh!
In those two letters we also get a great insight into his huge dedication to personal prayer, penance, his humility, awareness of his own sinfulness, throwing himself totally at the mercy of God. Guí pearsanta, úirísleacht, aithrí trócaire Dé.
Love of Nature
The fact that St. Patrick spent so much of his time on Croagh Patrick, Máméan and other ancient religious locations in our beautiful country shows his deep love of nature and it being a reflection of the beauty and love of God. Dúlra agus áileacht na hÉireann mar mhacalla ar Dhia!
The work and mission of St. Patrick here gives us an indication of the importance of the centrality of sharing, celebrationg and spreading the faith not only in Ireland but to the ends of the world. Craobhscaoileadh an tsoiscéal agus an Creideamh, luachmhar Chríostúil!
Críost Liom, Críost Romham
The beautiful prayer St. Patrick’s Breastplate, Críost Liom, Críost Romhama beautiful Christocentric prayer, Lúireach Naomh Pádraig – gives a sense of St. Patrick’s closeness to and devotion to Jesus Christ.
I love the absolute trust in the power and providence of God at the heart of the Breastplate:
Neart Dé do mo stiúradh,
Cumhacht Dé do mo chumhdach,
Críonnacht Dé do mo threorú,
Súil Dé ag faire dom,
Cluas Dé ag éisteacht liom,
Briathar Dé ag labhairt liom,
Lámh Dé do mo chosaint,
Slí Dé do mo tharraingt,
Sciath Dé mar dhídean dom,
Slua Dé do mo chaomhnú
Ar ghaiste diabhal,
Ar chathú duáilcí,
Ar mhianta mí-ionraice,
Ar lucht mo mhillte,
I gcéin is i gcóngar,
Im’ aonar nó i gcomhluadar.
Ag cuimhniú ar hImircí
Today is a day to celebrate that distinct spirituality of St. Patrick. It is also a day that we remember our emigrants away from home. Cuimhníonn muid orthu siúd atá ar deoraíocht ar fud na cruinne. May they continue to be safe and always proud and happy to be part of what makes it special to be Irish especially the wonderful Christian faith that St. Patrick brought to us so many centuries ago.
Final Greetings and Blessings for the Festival
I take this opportunity to wish you a most enjoyable day, a hearty celebration and an outstanding holiday weekend. Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig oraibh agus go mbeirimid beo an t-am seo arís!