A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
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I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Friday, March 17, 2006

Excerpts from the Writings of St. Patrick

I am Patrick, yes a sinner, and the simplest of peasant so that I am despised by the majority of men. My father Calpornius, who was a deacon, was the son of Potitus, a priest. We lived in the town of Bannaventa Berniac, and outside there was a small holiday villa. It was here that I was taken captive- I had no option but to surrender myself, for I was not yet sixteen years old... ...It is precisely because of all this that I may not stay silent nor indeed would it serve any purpose, about the great benefits and such great grace which the Lord has seen fit to bestow on me in the land of my captivity...
The Confession

For he gave me such great grace, that many people through me were reborn to God and afterward confirmed and brought to perfection... ...They are those whom the Lord has chosen from the ends of the earth... ...I have not cheated a single one of them, nor would I dream of such a thing, for God and for the sake of his church, lest I should stir up persecution for them and all of us, or for fear that the name of the Lord should be blasphemed because of me.... ...As every day arrives, I expect either sudden death or deception or being taken back as a slave or some such other misfortune. But fear none of these... ....Whoever comes across this writing and takes the trouble to read it through, namely the writing of Patrick, a sinner who, though he was never taught, wrote it down in Ireland... ...This is my Confession before I Come to die
The Confession

..The (Holy) Spirit comes to support the failings in our prayer, for we not know how we should pray as we ought. But the Spirit himself asks for us, with so many groans that may not be described. And once more it is written, �The Lord himself is our advocate who asks on our behalf ..�
The Confession

I am Patrick; I am established here in Ireland where I profess myself bishop. I am certain in my heart that all that I am, I have received from God... ...I speak out too for love of my neighbors who are my only sons; for them I gave up my home country, my parents and even pushing my own life to the brink of death... ...I myself have composed and written these words with my own hand, so that they can be given and handed over, then sent swiftly to the soldiers of Coroticus... ...The very next day after my new converts, dressed all in white, were anointed with chrism, even as it was still gleaming upon their foreheads, they were cruelly cut down and killed... ...At once I sent a good priest with a letter... ...Yet all they did was to laugh in our faces at the mere mention of their prisoners. Because of all this, I am at a loss to know whether to weep more for those they killed or those that are captured: or indeed for these men themselves
Letter to Coroticus

...Patricides, they are, yes and fratricides, no better than ravening wolves devouring God�s own people like a loaf of bread... ...Coroticus, who fears neither God nor the priests whom he has chosen and to whom he has given the highest divine power... ...My voice is raised in sorrow and mourning... ...We have been overwhelmed by the wickedness of unjust men, it is as if we had been made outsiders. They find it unacceptable that we are Irish but it says is it not true that you all have but one God? Why then have you, each one of you, abandoned your own neighbor?
Letter to Coroticus

(On the murdered dead) ...I can see you all clearly: you have set out for where there will be no more night, no more lament, neither death. ...Therefore will you reign with the apostles and the prophets and all the martyrs. You will attain the eternal kingdoms. Just as he testifies, exactly as he declares... ...And so, now you, Coroticus, and your gangsters, now where do you see yourselves? You gave away girls like prizes: not yet women, but baptized. All for some petty temporal gain that will pass in the very next instant...
Letter to Coroticus

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