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Greenwich Hibernian Association
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St. Patrick’s Day is held to honor the patron saint of Ireland. The day is celebrated on March 17, the anniversary of St. Patrick’s death. The day has been observed in America since colonial times. The first St. Patrick’s Day parade was held in New York city in 1779 and attended by Irish recruits of the occupying British army. The day has been celebrated since 1845. Many people, even those who are not Irish, observe the day by wearing green clothes, flowers and shamrocks. Parades are held in many cities, the most famous of which is held in New York, where paraders march along Fifth Avenue past St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
St. Patrick was born sometime in the early fifth century, probably in England. At age 16, he was kidnapped and sold as a slave in Ireland. While in captivity, Patrick developed a deep religious faith. He escaped from his captors and, led by a dream, found his way home. He became a monk, but soon another vision led him back to Ireland, where he worked to spread Christianity. Patrick died about 492. He left an autobiographical work called “Confession,” which he wrote in Latin.
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