Well, I’m wearing green today, but I’m afraid it’s not because I can really call myself Irish. I have a little Irish blood, but Stanley is an English name, and most of my ancestors were German, apparently (please forgive my genealogical ignorance).
I’m excited to be wearing a green sweater, though. For me, the sweater is not about holiday festivities as much as it is about celebrating God’s work through St. Patrick, the man after whom this holiday is named.
Patrick (around A.D. 390–460) has an amazing story. At the age of sixteen, pirates captured him in his native Britain and sold him into slavery in Ireland. Years later, Patrick escaped and returned home, but around A.D. 432 he went back to Ireland. Why did he do this? He felt compelled to bring the good news of salvation through Jesus to the Irish people.
The Bible is clear that it is necessary for people to proclaim the good news of Jesus to those who have not heard it: “How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?” (Romans 10:14 NIV).
I am so glad Patrick was willing to return to the land of his slavery and preach the good news to the Irish. What a great reason to wear green.
— Beau O’Stanley