Today is the Feast Day of Saint Patrick and even though it is a bit more subdued this year it gives us the opportunity to reflect on St Patrick. Patrick was born in the early years of the fifth century in the Roman colony of Britain. He was taken captive and brought to Ireland as a slave. He tended herds on Slemish mountain for six years. His captivity had a very positive effect on his spiritual life. He prayed many times each day, his faith growing stronger and his love and reverence for God growing and increasing during his captivity. He escaped back home at the age of twenty two. Having returned home, the voice of the Irish began to call him back to walk amongst them once again. He studied and returned to Ireland as a bishop c. 457 -61 or as early as 432, according to another tradition. Eventually he made many converts. Some of his writings still survive: The Letter to Coroticus and his Confession. Patrick was a man who lived by his faith and and allowed Christ to direct his whole life. He died in 491.  Today, as we celebrate the Feast Day of St Patrick, during this difficult time for our country, may we be led by his example and unwavering faith in the Lord. Críost liom, Críost romham, Críost i mo dhiadh, Críost istigh ionam.