St. Patrick: Missionary to the Irish

As an adolescent, Patrick was captured by marauding Irish pirates and taken to Ireland.  In Ireland, Patrick was a slave serving as a shepherd amongst debased and wicked barbarians known for their immoral behavior.  It was during this time that he was converted, and, after six years, he managed to escape back to Britain.  Back in Britain, Patrick studied theology and became a minister of the Word.  In time, Patrick returned to Ireland and preached the good news of Jesus to the very same people who held him captive.  It was through Patrick’s missionary effort that the Church of Christ took root in Ireland.

The following are quotes from Patrick, missionary to the Irish from Britain, excerpted from his book Confession.

I came to the people of Ireland to preach the Gospel, and to suffer insult from the unbelievers, bearing the reproach of my going abroad, and many persecutions even unto bonds, and to give my free birth for the benefit of others; and, should I be worthy, I am prepared to give even my life without hesitation and most gladly for his name, and it is there that I wish to spend it until I die, if the Lord grant it to me.


There is no other God, nor ever was, nor will be, than God the Father unbegotten, without beginning, from whom is all beginning, the Lord of the universe, as we have been taught; and his son Jesus Christ, whom we declare to have always been with the Father, spiritually and ineffably begotten by the Father before the beginning of the world, before all beginning; and by him are made all things visible and invisible.  He was made man, and having defeated death, was received into heaven by the Father; “and he hath given him all power over all names in heaven, on earth, and under the earth, and every tongue shall confess to him that Jesus Christ is Lord and God,” in whom we believe, and whose advent we expect soon to be, “judge of the living and of the dead,” who will render to every man according to his deeds; and “he has poured forth upon you abundantly the Holy Spirit,” the gift and pledge of immortality, who makes those who believe and obey “sons of God…and joint heirs with Christ”; and him do we confess and adore, one God in the Trinity of the Holy Name.

For further reading on Patrick:

Haykin, Michael. Rediscovering the Church Fathers


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