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St. Patrick on Suffering

March 17, 2008

Patrick was a Romano-British citizen, kidnapped in Britain at age 16 and served as a slave for 6 years in Wood of Fochoill, Ireland.  He later returned to the homeland of his captivity, Ireland, to spread the gospel and plant churches.  His mission to Ireland 457-492 began at age 40 after being turned down after his first request to be commissioned as a missionary.

St. Patrick’s early captivity fostered a theology of suffering that sustained him throughout his ministry.  The precise area of his captivity is still unknown and was likely excepted from his confession because of his emphasis on the providence of God directing Patrick’s ways for his personal sanctification and the conversion of Ireland.  This redemptive theology of suffering is encapsulated in his reflections on captivity “and the Lord ‘poured down upon us the heat of his anger…and there ‘the Lord opened my heart to an awareness of my unbelief’ so that, perhaps, at last ‘I might remember my sins and that I might turn with all my heart to love the Lord my God’ (1.17, 20).”

4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 18, 2008 2:18 pm

    wow, that is beautiful. I had one of those days yesterday ‘I might remember my sins and that I might turn with all my heart to love the Lord my God’ Could you reference the book/s that you used? Sorry if I’m missing it here.

  2. Sara permalink
    March 18, 2008 4:07 pm

    Thanks, Jonathan, so many of us aren’t up on who St. Patrick really was

  3. March 19, 2008 9:33 am

    The extant, reliable writings of St Patrick are limited to his Confession and a letter he wrote. Maire B. de Paor has both, with history and commentary in her book Patrick: The Pilgrim Apostle of Ireland. It is outstanding. That quote can be found various places in the book e.g. p. 40 and is part of his confession. However, you can do a web search for his confession and find it free online.

  4. March 19, 2008 10:40 pm


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