Frj82’s Blog

March 17, 2009

Saint Patrick of Scranton

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone!  For anyone in the immediate 20-or-so mile radius, St. Patrick’s Day has been over for a couple of days now.  But what a day, what a Saint.  I saw sooo many people bent over in prayer…or was it bent over in prayerEither way, thousands of people…upwards of 100,000 flocked to the Holy City of Scranton, the center of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Scranton, the Holy See of the Polish National Catholic Church, to partake in the holy meal prepared for us all.  It is in great remembrance after all.  Saint Patrick did quite a bit for us all, not just the Irish.  He made sure snakes would never populate the ground of Ireland, thus protecting the people from any snake-related takeover and calamity.

All kidding aside, the Saint Patrick story was that of what I like to call “Christian Revenge.”  Not revenge like we are used to seeing in movies, but what we should do when someone wrongs us.  Jesus said in Luke 6:29-31 “To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic.  Give to everyone who asks of you, and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.”  You know, a little thing called the Golden Rule.

Young 16-year-old Patrick was taken captive in Ireland and sold off to slavery.  Slavery meant a lot back then, and none of it good.  Eventually, through continuous prayer and the grace of God, he was given help by an angel to flee at the tender age of 22.  It was from then on that he back tracked west, began an official religious/theological education and apprenticeship, became a priest…all while holding Ireland in his heart.  The funny thing is St. Patrick was as Irish as I, Jason Soltysiak, am.  He was born in Scotland, lived much of his life in Rome (save for the slavery thing) before eventually returning.  This set of information almost set off a riot when it was mentioned at a pizza place (not by me) that St. Patrick wasn’t even Irish.  Knowing the little I did about him, I smiled through the voices raising to shouts around me until I was looked at as a voice of knowing (being a priest, of course).  I continued to smile but pretended I wasn’t paying any attention. 

My cheek muscles hurt from all the smiling I did this weekend…as well as my throat.  My throat hurt from singing Mass on Friday morning, singing a funeral Friday morning, singing Stations Friday afternoon, singing Stations Friday night, saying Mass Saturday morning, teaching Catechism until noon, going out from 2-7 on Saturday (I know, I know, weak), and singing/responding to 3 Masses on Sunday morning.  Add the music being so loud that you had to smile when you had no idea what someone was saying to you and yelling when you wanted to attempt to say something (but knowing they didn’t actually hear/care), and I was sort of kind of miserable by Sunday afternoon.  Thank God Sorrowful Lamentations (Gorzkie Zale) were scheduled to be sung Sunday at 4…that would cheer me up.  


1 Comment »

  1. happy i drinking Patrick is saint….uhhhhhhhh… it bedtime yet?

    Comment by adam — March 17, 2009 @ 8:46 pm

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