I’ll post this now so you may be adequately prepared to observe tomorrow.
St. Patrick was not Irish. I know, bummer. Fold up the four-leaved clovers wall decorations and save the money you’d have spent on beer. Just kidding. About the beer.
I’ll put some links below, so you can get the scintillating details. But here’s the skinny:
He grew up in Britain and was kinapped from his village by Irishmen when he was in his teens (this was all towards the end of the fourth century). He had grown up with a strong Christian family, but by his admissions, was a rather wild kid. It was while he was in Ireland working as a slave that he grew to know God.
Years later, he escaped from Ireland. One night, he had a dream wherein the Irish were calling out to him to come and work among them again. Some of what happened in the time between his escape from Ireland and his return to it seem disputed by scholars. But he did return.
Patrick and his monks are largely attributed the credit for lessening the influence of the pagan worshippers and also for spreading Christianity over the island.
I posted on of his prayers here last May. It’s really good.