Monday, March 17, 2008

March Matchups: St. Patrick vs. St. Gerard

Hello everyone and welcome back to March Matchups! Today, being St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to pit together St. Patrick and St. Gerard, in what most assuredly is a classic confrontation.

Due to our society becoming more and more secular, the true meaning of St. Patrick’s Day is largely ignored, and that is that it is a Christian holiday. St. Patrick is credited with converting the majority of Ireland to Christianity. Legend also says that he drove the snakes out of the country, although many believe that the “snake” is more symbolic in this case as a reference to paganism. He also introduced the idea of the shamrock, which is a three-leaved clover that is representative of the Trinity. St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17 because that is the day of his death, although the exact year is debatable, it is believed to have occurred in the late fifth century.

On the other side of the ring, is St. Gerard, the patron saint of children, childbirth, mothers and expectant mothers. He was accused of being the father of a woman’s child, however, she later recanted her false accusations. Gerard, though went into silence during this time period, until his name was cleared. The idea of Gerard being the patron saint of children came out of this episode. Every year in the northern part of Ireland, the feast of St. Gerard is celebrated for eight days in October.

St. Patrick has the upper hand in this one, until I nail him with my shillelagh (and yes I do own one). St. Gerard covers for the win. What would you expect being that Gerard is my middle name, plus would you rather have eight days of festivities, or one? My point exactly.


Anonymous said...

I always learn something from your blog!


Sean G. Kilkelly said...

Thank YOU for reading!