We commemorate St. Patrick, a fifth-century bishop and former slave, famous for driving snakes out of Ireland. I’ve never been to Ireland, plus I live where there are no dangerous snakes, so his deed didn’t hold much meaning for me. Until I realized that snakes are also an image for the unpleasant forces that can slither and slide into human existence. Gossip, for instance, poisons relationships and squeezes the life out of families and communities. What might be afflicting us now?
St. Patrick is beloved because he offered God’s mercy to free people from what afflicted them, bringing God’s comfort and the reassurance that God never forgets them, even when they forsake him. Let’s rejoice in praying with St. Patrick.
Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.
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