From the Principal: Inspired by St Patrick
Patrick was an ordinary young man when he was growing up. His name was Maewyn at first. But some terrible events set his life in a different direction. He was captured by pirates and sold as a slave in Ireland. The tribal peoples of Ireland were animistic, superstitious, and lived in constant fear. Maewyn’s job was to look after the animals. During this difficult time, six long years, he learnt to trust in God. Through a dream, God showed him how to escape, and there was a ship ready to take him home to Britain. After further trials and troubles, he finally arrived home. This would be a happy ending, but God had a different plan.
Through another dream, God called Maewyn back to Ireland, to share the light of Jesus with them. He did not want to go at first, but eventually responded to the call, taking the name Patrick. At first, the people did not want to hear, and he was in constant danger of being killed. People who turned to Jesus were in danger of being killed as well. However, he continued to trust in God and pray. There were adventures and miracles. At times he was in jail. At times he had the opportunity to speak to tribal chiefs. Slowly but surely, all of Ireland turned to Christ.
After the fall of the Roman Empire, when many books were being burned, Ireland became a haven for literature and education. Their monasteries became famous as places to learn and pray. Many writings from the Greek and Roman Empires were preserved, thanks to the Irish. Without this, our civilisation would not be what it is today.
What can we learn from Patrick today?
- You might feel ordinary and be in a difficult time, but God loves to use ordinary people for extraordinary purposes. Don’t underestimate what he can do with you.
- Trust God completely in everything, especially in difficult times. If he tells you to do it, trust him.
- You have got something that needs to be shared with others. There are problems to solve, fears to be quenched, people living in darkness who need light.
- Life has ups and downs, good times and difficulties. Look to God in every situation and he will help you through.