Celebrating St. Patrick: Root of holiday dates back centuries, more than revelers know


Here in America, we celebrate all different kinds of cultural celebrations such as Cinco de Mayo, Chinese New Years, and St. Patrick’s Day, regardless of our backgrounds and ethnic ties.

However, very rarely do we  know what we are celebrating for.

With St. Patrick’s Day coming and going this year, I’m sure it was hard to miss all the green people wore, the green alcohol with shamrock decorations and beads, or even the corned beef and cabbage meals.

I’m sure as you walked around Stockton, you have seen at least one girl (not Irish at all) wearing her “kiss me I’m Irish” shirt.

If you are apart of the 21 and over crowd, I’m sure you went to a pub (not called a “bar” anymore on St. Patty’s day because that just wouldn’t be “Irish“), to get your green alcohol, whether it be a classic Irish drink or any kind of your choosing.

Here in America we love every excuse to celebrate, period, but I ask again do we really know what we’re celebrating?

St. Patrick’s Day is a day the Irish spend to commemorate Saint Patrick.

He was a man credited for bringing the Protestant religion to heavily Catholic Ireland.

March 17, the day we celebrate, is the saint’s religious feast day and also the day of his death.

On this day, most people would attend church in the morning and celebrate through feasts, eating, drinking and dancing from afternoon until night.

For more than 1,000 years, the Irish have celebrated St. Patty’s day as a religious holiday.

Oh and what’s with all the green and shamrocks, you ask?

People wear green because the Catholics in Ireland were identified with the color green.

Protestants wore orange, and there were constant clashed between the Protestants and Catholics, that’s why on St. Patrick’s day you pinch anyone wearing orange or any other color than that.

The shamrock was a symbol in Ireland that people wore to show they were in support of the rebellion about to take place in 1798.

Funny enough, corned beef and cabbage, the traditional meal eaten on St. Patrick’s, day isn’t entirely Irish.

Cabbage is a big part of the Irish diet; however, traditionally in Ireland, Irish people ate cabbage with Irish bacon. Corned beef was introduced to the Irish by Jewish neighbors in America.