I, Patrick, a sinner, a most simple countryman, the least of all the faithful and most contemptible to many, had for father the deacon Calpurnius, son of the late Potitus, a priest, of the settlement of Bannavem Taburniae; he had a small villa nearby where I was taken captive. I was at that time about sixteen years of age. I did not, indeed, know the true God; and I was taken into captivity in Ireland with many thousands of people, according to our deserts, for quite drawn away from God, we did not keep his precepts, nor were we obedient to our priests who used to remind us of our salvation. And the Lord brought down on us the fury of his being and scattered us among many nations, even to the ends of the earth, where I, in my smallness, am now to be found among foreigners.
And there the Lord opened my mind to an awareness of my unbelief, in order that, even so late, I might remember my transgressions and turn with all my heart to the Lord my God, who had regard for my insignificance and pitied my youth and ignorance. And he watched over me before I knew him, and before I learned sense or even distinguished between good and evil, and he protected me, and consoled me as a father would his son.
Therefore, indeed, I cannot keep silent, nor would it be proper, so many favours and graces has the Lord deigned to bestow on me in the land of my captivity. For after chastisement from God, and recognizing him, our way to repay him is to exalt him and confess his wonders before every nation under heaven.
For there is no other God, nor ever was before, nor shall be hereafter, but God the Father, unbegotten and without beginning, in whom all things began, whose are all things, as we have been taught; and his son Jesus Christ, who manifestly always existed with the Father, before the beginning of time in the spirit with the Father, indescribably begotten before all things, and all things visible and invisible were made by him. He was made man, conquered death and was received into Heaven, to the Father who gave him all power over every name in Heaven and on Earth and in Hell, so that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and God, in whom we believe. And we look to his imminent coming again, the judge of the living and the dead, who will render to each according to his deeds. And he poured out his Holy Spirit on us in abundance, the gift and pledge of immortality, which makes the believers and the obedient into sons of God and co-heirs of Christ who is revealed, and we worship one God in the Trinity of holy name.
He himself said through the prophet: ‘Call upon me in the day of’ trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.’ And again: ‘It is right to reveal and publish abroad the works of God.’
I am imperfect in many things, nevertheless I want my brethren and kinsfolk to know my nature so that they may be able to perceive my soul’s desire.
I am not ignorant of what is said of my Lord in the Psalm: ‘You destroy those who speak a lie.’ And again: ‘A lying mouth deals death to the soul.’ And likewise the Lord says in the Gospel: ‘On the day of judgment men shall render account for every idle word they utter.’
So it is that I should mightily fear, with terror and trembling, this judgment on the day when no one shall be able to steal away or hide, but each and all shall render account for even our smallest sins before the judgment seat of Christ the Lord.
And therefore for some time I have thought of writing, but I have hesitated until now, for truly, I feared to expose myself to the criticism of men, because I have not studied like others, who have assimilated both Law and the Holy Scriptures equally and have never changed their idiom since their infancy, but instead were always learning it increasingly, to perfection, while my idiom and language have been translated into a foreign tongue. So it is easy to prove from a sample of my writing, my ability in rhetoric and the extent of my preparation and knowledge, for as it is said, ‘wisdom shall be recognized in speech, and in understanding, and in knowledge and in the learning of truth.’
But why make excuses close to the truth, especially when now I am presuming to try to grasp in my old age what I did not gain in my youth because my sins prevented me from making what I had read my own? But who will believe me, even though I should say it again? A young man, almost a beardless boy, I was taken captive before I knew what I should desire and what I should shun. So, consequently, today I feel ashamed and I am mightily afraid to expose my ignorance, because, not eloquent, with a small vocabulary, I am unable to explain as the spirit is eager to do and as the soul and the mind indicate.
But had it been given to me as to others, in gratitude I should not have kept silent, and if it should appear that I put myself before others, with my ignorance and my slower speech, in truth, it is written: ‘The tongue of the stammerers shall speak rapidly and distinctly.’ How much harder must we try to attain it, we of whom it is said: ‘You are an epistle of Christ in greeting to the ends of the earth … written on your hearts, not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God.’ And again, the Spirit witnessed that the rustic life was created by the Most High.
I am, then, first of all, countryfied, an exile, evidently unlearned, one who is not able to see into the future, but I know for certain, that before I was humbled I was like a stone lying in deep mire, and he that is mighty came and in his mercy raised me up and, indeed, lifted me high up and placed me on top of the wall. And from there I ought to shout out in gratitude to the Lord for his great favours in this world and for ever, that the mind of man cannot measure.
Therefore be amazed, you great and small who fear God, and you men of God, eloquent speakers, listen and contemplate. Who was it summoned me, a fool, from the midst of those who appear wise and learned in the law and powerful in rhetoric and in all things? Me, truly wretched in this world, he inspired before others that I could be- if I would- such a one who, with fear and reverence, and faithfully, without complaint, would come to the people to whom the love of Christ brought me and gave me in my lifetime, if I should be worthy, to serve them truly and with humility.
According, therefore, to the measure of one’s faith in the Trinity, one should proceed without holding back from danger to make known the gift of God and everlasting consolation, to spread God’s name everywhere with confidence and without fear, in order to leave behind, after my death, foundations for my brethren and sons whom I baptized in the Lord in so many thousands.
And I was not worthy, nor was I such that the Lord should grant his humble servant this, that after hardships and such great trials, after captivity, after many years, he should give me so much favour in these people, a thing which in the time of my youth I neither hoped for nor imagined.
But after I reached Ireland I used to pasture the flock each day and I used to pray many times a day. More and more did the love of God, and my fear of him and faith increase, and my spirit was moved so that in a day I said from one up to a hundred prayers, and in the night a like number; besides I used to stay out in the forests and on the mountain and I would wake up before daylight to pray in the snow, in icy coldness, in rain, and I used to feel neither ill nor any slothfulness, because, as I now see, the Spirit was burning in me at that time.
And it was there of course that one night in my sleep I heard a voice saying to me: ‘You do well to fast: soon you will depart for your home country.’ And again, a very short time later, there was a voice prophesying: ‘Behold, your ship is ready.’ And it was not close by, but, as it happened, two hundred miles away, where I had never been nor knew any person. And shortly thereafter I turned about and fled from the man with whom I had been for six years, and I came, by the power of God who directed my route to advantage (and I was afraid o nothing), until I reached that ship.
And on the same day that I arrived, the ship was setting out from the place, and I said that I had the wherewithal to sail with them; and the steersman was displeased and replied in anger, sharply: ‘By no means attempt to go with us.’ Hearing this I left them to go to the hut where I was staying, and on the way I began to pray, and before the prayer was finished I heard one of them shouting loudly after me: ‘Come quickly because the men are calling you.’ And immediately I went back to them and they started to say to me: ‘Come, because we are admitting you out of good faith; make friendship with us in any way you wish.’ (And so, on that day, I refused to suck the breasts of these men from fear of God, but nevertheless I had hopes that they would come to faith in Jesus Christ, because they were barbarians.) And for this I continued with them, and forthwith we put to sea.
And after three days we reached land, and for twenty-eight days journeyed through uninhabited country, and the food ran out and hunger overtook them; and one day the steersman began saying: ‘Why is it, Christian? You say your God is great and all-powerful; then why can you not pray for us? For we may perish of hunger; it is unlikely indeed that we shall ever see another human being.’ In fact, I said to them, confidently: ‘Be converted by faith with all your heart to my Lord God, because nothing is impossible for him, so that today he will send food for you on your road, until you be sated, because everywhere he abounds.’ And with God’s help this came to pass; and behold, a herd of swine appeared on the road before our eyes, and they slew many of them, and remained there for two nights, and the were full of their meat and well restored, for many of them had fainted and would otherwise have been left half dead by the wayside. And after this they gave the utmost thanks to God, and I was esteemed in their eyes, and from that day they had food abundantly. They discovered wild honey, besides, and they offered a share to me, and one of them said: ‘It is a sacrifice.’ Thanks be to God, I tasted none of it.
The very same night while I was sleeping Satan attacked me violently, as I will remember as long as I shall be in this body; and there fell on top of me as it were, a huge rock, and not one of my members had any force. But from whence did it come to me, ignorant in the spirit, to call upon ‘Helias’? And meanwhile I saw the sun rising in the sky, and while I was crying out ‘Helias, Helias’ with all my might, lo, the brilliance of that sun fell upon me and immediately shook me free of all the weight; and I believe that I was aided by Christ my Lord, and that his Spirit then was crying out for me, and I hope that it will be so in the day of my affliction, just as it says in the Gospel: ‘In that hour’, the Lord declares, ‘it is not you who speaks but the Spirit of your Father speaking in you.’
And a second time, after many years, I was taken captive. On the first night I accordingly remained with my captors, but I heard a divine prophecy, saying to me: ‘You shall be with them for two months. So it happened. On the sixtieth night the Lord delivered me from their hands.
On the journey he provided us with food and fire and dry weather every day, until on the tenth day we came upon people. As I mentioned above, we had journeyed through an unpopulated country for twenty-eight days, and in fact the night that we came upon people we had no food.
And after a few ‘ears I was again in Britain with my parents kinsfolk, and the welcomed me as a son, and asked me, in faith, that after the great tribulations I had endured I should not go an where else away from them. And, of course, there, in a vision of the night, I saw a man whose name was Victoricus coming as it from Ireland with innumerable letters, and he gave me one of them, and I read the beginning of the letter: ‘The Voice of the Irish’, and as I was reading the beginning of the letter I seemed at that moment to hear the voice of those who were beside the forest of Foclut which is near the western sea, and the were crying as if with one voice: ‘We beg you, holy youth, that you shall come and shall walk again among us.’ And I was stung intensely in my heart so that I could read no more, and thus I awoke. Thanks be to God, because after so many ears the Lord bestowed on them according to their cry.
And another night- God knows, I do not, whether within me or beside me- … most words + … + which I heard and could not understand, except at the end of the speech it was represented thus: ‘He who gave his life for you, he it is who speaks within you.’ And thus I awoke, joyful.
And on a second occasion I saw Him praying within me, and I was as it were, inside my own body , and I heard Him above me- that is, above my inner self. He was praying powerfully with sighs. And in the course of this I was astonished and wondering, and I pondered who it could be who was praying within me. But at the end of the prayer it was revealed to me that it was the Spirit. And so I awoke and remembered the Apostle’s words: ‘Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we know not how to pray as we ought. But the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for utterance.’ And again: ‘The Lord our advocate intercedes for us.’
And then I was attacked by a goodly number of my elders, who brought up my sins against my arduous episcopate. That day in particular I was mightily upset, and might have fallen here and for ever; but the Lord generously spared me, a convert, and an alien, for his name’s sake, and he came powerfully to my assistance in that state of being trampled down. I pray God that it shall not be held against them as a sin that I fell truly into disgrace and scandal.
They brought up against me after thirty years an occurrence I had confessed before becoming a deacon. On account of the anxiety in my sorrowful mind, I laid before my close friend what I had perpetrated on a day- nay, rather in one hour- in my boyhood because I was not yet proof against sin. God knows- I do not- whether I was fifteen years old at the time, and I did not then believe in the living God, nor had I believed, since my infancy; but I remained in death and unbelief until I was severely rebuked, and in truth I was humbled every day by hunger and nakedness.
On the other hand, I did not proceed to Ireland of my own accord until I was almost giving up, but through this I was corrected by the Lord, and he prepared me so that today I should be what was once far from me, in order that I should have the care of- or rather, I should be concerned for- the salvation of others, when at that time, still, I was only concerned for myself.
Therefore, on that day when I was rebuked, as I have just mentioned, I saw in a vision of the night a document before my face, without honour, and meanwhile I heard a divine prophecy, saying to me: ‘We have seen with displeasure the face of the chosen one divested of his good name.’ And he did not say ‘You have seen with displeasure’, but ‘We have seen with displeasure’ (as if He included Himself). He said then: ‘He who touches you, touches the apple of my eye.’
For that reason, I give thanks to him who strengthened me in all things, so that I should not be hindered in my setting out and also in my work which I was taught by Christ my Lord; but more, from that state of affairs I felt, within me, no little courage, and vindicated my faith before God and man.
Hence, therefore, I say boldly that my conscience is clear now and hereafter. God is my witness that I have not lied in these words to you.
But rather, I am grieved for my very close friend, that because of him we deserved to hear such a prophecy. The one to whom I entrusted my soul! And I found out from a goodly number of brethren, before the case was made in my defence (in which I did not take part, nor was I in Britain, nor was it pleaded by me), that in my absence he would fight in my behalf. Besides, he told me himself: ‘See, the rank of bishop goes to you’- of which I was not worthy. But how did it come to him, shortly afterwards, to disgrace me publicly, in the presence of all, good and bad, because previously, gladly and of his own free will, he pardoned me, as did the Lord, who is greater than all?
I have said enough. But all the same, I ought not to conceal God’s gift which he lavished on us in the land of my captivity, for then I sought him resolutely, and I found him there, and he preserved me from all evils (as I believe) through the in-dwelling of his Spirit, which works in me to this day. Again, boldly, but God knows, if this had been made known to me by man, I might, perhaps, have kept silent for the love of Christ.
Thus I give untiring thanks to God who kept me faithful in the day of my temptation, so that today I may confidently over my soul as a living sacrifice for Christ my Lord; who am I, Lord? or, rather, what is my calling? that you appeared to me in so great a divine quality, so that today among the barbarians I might constantly exalt and magnify your name in whatever place I should be, and not only in good fortune, but even in affliction? So that whatever befalls me, be it good or bad, I should accept it equally, and give thanks always to God who revealed to me that I might trust in him, implicitly and forever, and who will encourage me so that, ignorant, and in the last days, I may dare to undertake so devout and so wonderful a work; so that I might imitate one of those whom, once, long ago, the Lord already pre-ordained to be heralds of his Gospel to witness to all peoples to the ends of the earth. So are we seeing, and so it is fulfilled; behold, we are witnesses because the Gospel has been preached as far as the places beyond which no man lives.
But it is tedious to describe in detail all my labours one by one. I will tell briefly how most holy God frequently delivered me, from slavery, and from the twelve trials with which my soul was threatened, from man traps as well, and from things I am not able to put into words. I would not cause offence to readers, but I have God as witness who knew all things even before they happened, that, though I was a poor ignorant waif, still he gave me abundant warnings through divine prophecy.
Whence came to me this wisdom which was not my own, I who neither knew the number of days nor had knowledge of God? Whence came the so great and so healthful gift of knowing or rather loving God, though I should lose homeland and family.
And many gifts were offered to me with weeping and tears, and I offended them, the donors, and also went against the wishes of a good number of my elders; but guided by God, I neither agreed with them nor deferred to them, not by my own grace but by God who is victorious in me and withstands them all, so that I might come to the Irish people to preach the Gospel and endure insults from unbelievers; that I might hear scandal of my travels, and endure man persecutions to the extent of prison; and so that I might give up my free birthright for the advantage of others, and if I should be worthy, I am ready to give even m life without hesitation; and most willingly for His name. And I choose to devote it to him even unto death, if God grant it to me.
I am greatly God’s debtor, because he granted me so much grace, that through me many people would be reborn in God, and soon a after confirmed, and that clergy would be ordained everywhere for them, the masses lately come to belief, whom the Lord drew from the ends of the earth, just as he once promised through his prophets: ‘To you shall the nations come from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Our fathers have inherited naught hut lies, worthless things in which there is no profit.’ And again: ‘I have set you to be a light for the Gentiles that you may bring salvation to the uttermost ends of’ the earth.’
And I wish to wait then for his promise which is never unfulfilled, just as it is promised in the Gospel: ‘Many shall come from east and west and shall sit at table with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob.’ Just as we believe that believers will come from all the world.
So for that reason one should, in fact, fish well and diligently, just as the Lord foretells and teaches, saying, ‘Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men,’ and again through the prophets: ‘Behold, I am sending forth many fishers and hunters, says the Lord,’ et cetera. So it behoved us to spread our nets, that a vast multitude and throng might be caught for God, and so there might be clergy everywhere who baptized and exhorted a needy and desirous people. Just as the Lord says in the Gospel, admonishing and instructing: ‘Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always to the end of time.’ And again he says: ‘Go forth into the world and preach the Gospel to all creation. He who believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he who does not believe shall be condemned.’ And again: ‘This Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached throughout the whole world as a witness to all nations; and then the end of the world shall come.’ And likewise the Lord foretells through the prophet: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days (sayeth the Lord) that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions and your old men shall dream dreams; yea, and on my menservants and my maidservants in those days I will pour out my Spirit and they shall prophesy.’ And in Hosea he says: ‘Those who are not my people I will call my people, and those not beloved I will call my beloved, and in the very place where it was said to them, You are not my people, they will be called ‘Sons of the living God’.
So, how is it that in Ireland, where they never had any knowledge of God but, always, until now, cherished idols and unclean things, they are lately become a people of the Lord, and are called children of God; the sons of. the Irish [Scotti] and the daughters of the chieftains are to be seen as monks and virgins of Christ.
And there was, besides, a most beautiful, blessed, native-born noble Irish woman [Scotta] of adult age whom I baptized; and a few days later she had reason to come to us to intimate that she had received a prophecy from a divine messenger who advised her that she should become a virgin of Christ and she would draw nearer to God. Thanks be to God, six days from then, opportunely and most eagerly, she took the course that all virgins of God take, not with their fathers’ consent but enduring the persecutions and deceitful hindrances of their parents. Notwithstanding that, their number increases, (we do not know the number of them that are so reborn) besides the widows, and those who practice self-denial. Those who are kept in slavery suffer the most. They endure terrors and constant threats, but the Lord has given grace to many of his handmaidens, for even though they are forbidden to do so, still they resolutely follow his example.
So it is that even if I should wish to separate from them in order to go to Britain, and most willingly was I prepared to go to my homeland and kinsfolk- and not only there, but as far as Gaul to visit the brethren there, so that I might see the faces of the holy ones of my Lord, God knows how strongly I desired this- I am bound by the Spirit, who witnessed to me that if I did so he would mark me out as guilty, and I fear to waste the labour that I began, and not I, but Christ the Lord, who commanded me to come to be with them for the rest of my life, if the Lord shall will it and shield me from every evil, so that I may not sin before him.
So I hope that I did as I ought, but I do not trust myself as long as I am in this mortal body, for he is strong who strives daily to turn me away from the faith and true holiness to which I aspire until the end of my life for Christ my Lord, but the hostile flesh is always dragging one down to death, that is, to unlawful attractions. And I know in part why I did not lead a perfect life like other believers, but I confess to my Lord and do not blush in his sight, because I am not lying; from the time when I came to know him in my youth, the love of God and fear of him increased in me, and right up until now, by God’s favour, I have kept the faith.
What is more, let anyone laugh and taunt if he so wishes. I am not keeping silent, nor am I hiding the signs and wonders that were shown to me by the Lord many years before they happened, he who knew everything, even before the beginning of time.
Thus, I should give thanks unceasingly to God, who frequently forgave my folly and my negligence, in more than one instance so as not to be violently angry with me, who am placed as his helper, and I did not easily assent to what had been revealed to me, as the Spirit was urging; and the Lord took pity on me thousands upon thousands of times, because he saw within me that I was prepared, but that I was ignorant of what to do in view of my situation; because many were trying to prevent this mission. They were talking among themselves behind my back, and saying: ‘Why is this fellow throwing himself into danger among enemies who know not God?’ Not from malice, but having no liking for it; likewise, as I myself can testify, they perceived my rusticity. And I was not quick to recognize the grace that was then in me; I now know that I should have done so earlier.
Now I have put it frankly to my brethren and co-workers, who have believed me because of what I have foretold and still foretell to strengthen and reinforce your faith. I wish only that you, too, would make greater and better efforts. This will be my pride, for ‘a wise son makes a proud father’.
You know, as God does, how I went about among you from my youth in the faith of truth and in sincerity of heart. As well as to the heathen among whom I live, I have shown them trust and always show them trust. God knows I did not cheat any one of them, nor consider it, for the sake of God and his Church, lest I arouse them and bring about persecution for them and for all of us, and lest the Lord’s name be blasphemed because of me, for it is written: ‘Woe to the men through whom the name of the Lord is blasphemed.’
For even though I am ignorant in all things, nevertheless I attempted to safeguard some and myself also. And I gave back again to my Christian brethren and the virgins of Christ and the holy women the small unasked for gifts that they used to give me or some of their ornaments which they used to throw on the altar. And they would be offended with me because I did this. But in the hope of eternity, I safeguarded myself carefully in all things, so that they might not cheat me of my office of service on any pretext of dishonesty, and so that I should not in the smallest way provide any occasion for defamation or disparagement on the part of unbelievers.
What is more, when I baptized so many thousands of people, did I hope for even half a jot from any of them? If so Tell me, and I will give it back to you. And when the Lord ordained clergy everywhere by my humble means, and I freely conferred office on them, if I asked any of them anywhere even for the price of one shoe, say so to my face and I will give it back.
More, I spent for you so that they would receive me. And I went about among you, and everywhere for your sake, in danger, and as far as the outermost regions beyond which no one lived, and where no one had ever penetrated before, to baptize or to ordain clergy or to confirm people. Conscientiously and gladly I did all this work by God’s gift for your salvation.
From time to time I gave rewards to the kings, as well as making payments to their sons who travel with me; notwithstanding which, they seized me with my companions, and that day most avidly desired to kill me. But my time had not yet come. They plundered everything they found on us anyway, and fettered me in irons; and on the fourteenth day the Lord freed me from their power, and whatever they had of ours was given back to us for the sake of God on account of the indispensable friends whom we had made before.
Also you know from experience how much I was paying to those who were administering justice in all the regions, which I visited often. I estimate truly that I distributed to them not less than the price of fifteen men, in order that you should enjoy my company and I enjoy yours, always, in God. I do not regret this nor do I regard it as enough. I am paying out still and I shall pay out more. The Lord has the power to grant me that I may soon spend my own self, for your souls.
Behold, I call on God as my witness upon my soul that I am not lying; nor would I write to you for it to be an occasion for flattery or selfishness, nor hoping for honour from any one of you. Sufficient is the honour which is not yet seen, but in which the heart has confidence. He who made the promise is faithful; he never lies.
But I see that even here and now, I have been exalted beyond measure by the Lord, and I was not worthy that he should grant me this, while I know most certainly that poverty and failure suit me better than wealth and delight (but Christ the Lord was poor for our sakes; I certainly am wretched and unfortunate; even if I wanted wealth I have no resources, nor is it my own estimation of myself, for daily I expect to be murdered or betrayed or reduced to slavery if the occasion arises. But I fear nothing, because of the promises of Heaven; for I have cast myself into the hands of Almighty God, who reigns everywhere. As the prophet says: ‘Cast your burden on the Lord and he will sustain you.’
Behold now I commend my soul to God who is most faithful and for whom I perform my mission in obscurity, but he is no respecter of persons and he chose me for this service that I might be one of the least of his ministers.
For which reason I should make return for all that he returns me. But what should I say, or what should I promise to my Lord, for I, alone, can do nothing unless he himself vouchsafe it to me. But let him search my heart and my nature, for I crave enough for it, even too much, and I am ready for him to grant me that I drink of his chalice, as he has granted to others who love him.
Therefore may it never befall me to be separated by my God from his people whom he has won in this most remote land. I pray God that he gives me perseverance, and that he will deign that I should be a faithful witness for his sake right up to the time of my passing.
And if at any time I managed anything of good for the sake of my God whom I love, I beg of him that he grant it to me to shed my blood for his name with proselytes and captives, even should I be left unburied, or even were my wretched body to be torn limb from limb by dogs or savage beasts, or were it to be devoured by the birds of the air, I think, most surely, were this to have happened to me, I had saved both my soul and my body. For beyond any doubt on that day we shall rise again in the brightness of the sun, that is, in the glory of Christ Jesus our Redeemer, as children of the living God and co-heirs of Christ, made in his image; for we shall reign through him and for him and in him.
For the sun we see rises each day for us at his command, but it will never reign, neither will its splendour last, but all who worship it will come wretchedly to punishment. We, on the other hand, shall not die, who believe in and worship the true sun, Christ, who will never die, no more shall he die who has done Christ’s will, but will abide for ever just as Christ abides for ever, who reigns with God the Father Almighty and with the Holy Spirit before the beginning of time and now and for ever and ever. Amen.
Behold over and over again I would briefly set out the words of my confession. I testify in truthfulness and gladness of heart before God and his holy angels that I never had any reason, except the Gospel and his promises, ever to have returned to that nation from which I had previously escaped with difficulty.
But I entreat those who believe in and fear God, whoever deigns to examine or receive this document composed by the obviously unlearned sinner Patrick in Ireland, that nobody shall ever ascribe to my ignorance any trivial thing that I achieved or may have expounded that was pleasing to God, but accept and truly believe that it would have been the gift of God. And this is my confession before I die.
The Breastplate of Saint Patrick
The Lorica, The Deer’s Cry
I bind unto myself today
The strong name of the Trinity
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One, and One in Three.
I bind this day to me forever
By power of faith Christ’s Incarnation
His Baptism in the Jordan River
His Death on Cross for my salvation
His bursting from the spiced tomb
His riding up the heavenly way
His coming at the day of doom.
I bind unto myself today
I bind unto myself the power of the great love of the Cherubim
The sweet “Well done!” in judgement hour
The service of the Seraphim
Confessors faith, Apostles’ word
The Patriarch’s prayers, the Prophets’ scrolls
All good deeds done unto the Lord
And purity of virgin souls
I bind unto myself today
The virtues of the starlit heaven
The glorious sun’s light giving ray
The whiteness of the moon at even
The flashing of the lightning free
The whirling wind’s tempestuous shocks
The stable earth, the deep salt sea
Around the old eternal rocks
I bind unto myself today
The power of God to hold and lead
His eye to watch, His might to stay
His ear to harken to my need
The wisdom of my God to teach
His hand to guide, His shield to ward,
The word of God to give me speech.
His heavenly host to be my guard.
Against the demon snares of sin
The vice that gives temptation force
The natural lusts that war within
The hostile men who marr my course
Or few or many, far or nigh
In every place and in all hours
Against their fierce hostility.
I bind to me these holy powers
Against all Satan’s spells and wiles
Against false words of heresy
Against all knowledge that defiles
Against the heart’s idolatry
Against the wizard’s evil craft
Against the death wound and the burning
The choking wave, the poisonous shaft
Protect me Christ till Thy returning
Christ be with me, Christ within me
Christ behind me, Christ before me
Christ beside me, Christ to win me
Christ to comfort and restore me
Christ beneath me, Christ above me
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all who love me
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
I bind unto myself the name
The strong Name of the Trinity
By invocation of the same
The Three in One, the One in Three
Praise to the Lord of all salvation!
Salvation is of Christ the Lord.
i nDúlemon dáil.
niurt gene Críst cona bathius,
niurt a chrochtho cona adnacul,
niurt a essérgi cona fhresgabáil,
niurt a thoíniudo fri brithemnas mbrátho.
niurt gráid hiruphin,
i n-aurlataid aingel,
i frestul inna n-archaingel,
i freiscisin esséirgi
ar chiunn fochraicce,
i n-ernaigthib uasalathrach,
i tairchetlaib fáithe,
i preceptaib apstal,
i n-iresaib foísmedach,
i n-enccai noebingen,
i ngnímaib fer firén.
niurt Dé dom luamairecht.
Cumachtae nDé dom chumgabáil,
ciall Dé dom inthús,
rose nDé dom remcisiu,
cluas Dé dom étsecht,
briathar Dé dom erlabrai,
lám Dé dom imdegail,
intech Dé dom remthechtas,
sciath Dé dom imdítin,
sochraite Dé dom anacul
ar intledaib demnae,
ar aslagib dualche,
ar forimthechtaib aicnid,
ar cech duine mídúthrastar dam,
i céin ocus i n-ocus,
i n’uathud ocus i sochaidi.
Tocuiriur etrum indiu inna uili nert-so
fri cech nert n-amnas n-étrocar frista-i dom churp ocus dom anmain,
fri tinchetla sa-ibfh-aithe,
fri dubrechtu gentliuchtae,
fri saíbrechtu heretecdae,
fri imchellacht n-ídlachtae,
fri brichtu ban ocus goban ocus druad,
fri cech fiss arachuille corp ocus anmain duini.
Crist dom imdegail indiu
ar neim, ar loscud, ar bádud, ar guin,
condom-thair ilar fochraicce.
Críst limm, Críst reum, Críst im degaid,
Críst indium, Críst ísum, Críst uasum,
Críst desum, Críst tuathum,
Críst i llius, Críst i sius, Críst i n-erus,
Críst i cridiu cech duini immumrorda,
Críst i ngin cech oín rodom-labrathar,
Críst i cech rusc nonom-dercathar,
Críst i cech cluais rodom-chloathar.
i nDúlemon dáil.
Domini est salus,
Domini est salus,
Christi est salusñ
salus tua, Domine, sit semper nobiscum.
Mother to Son: ‘Come Back to The Faith’
FIL, FIL A RÚN Ó
Fil, fil a rún ó
Fil, fil a rún ó is ná himigh uaim
Fillorm a chuisle’s a stór
Agus Chifidh tú ‘n ghlóir má fhillean tú
Shúil mise thall is abhus
I móta ghrainn’ óige do rudagh mé
‘S ni fhaca aon iontas go foil
Mar an sagart Ó Dónaill ‘na mhinistir
Fil, fil a rún ó
Fil, fil a rún ó is ná himigh uaim
Fillorm a chuisle’s a stór
Agus Chifidh tú ‘n ghlóir má fhillean tú
Dhiúltaigh tú Peadar is Pól
Mar gheall ar an ór’s ar an airgead
Dhiúltaigh tú banrion na glóire
Agus d’iompaigh tú i gcóta ‘n mhinistir
Fil, fil a rún ó
Fil, fil a rún ó is ná himigh uaim
Má fhillean tú innui nó go deo
Fil insane ord ‘nar oileadh tú
TURN, TURN MY DEAR
Turn, turn, my dear
Turn, my dear and don’t leave me
Turn, my own heart [heart’s pulse] and treasure
And you will see the glory, if you return
I have wandered hither and yon
Throughout Moate*, where I was born
And I never yet saw such a wonder [surprise]
As the priest O’Donnell turned ‘minister’
Turn, turn, my dear
Turn, my dear and don’t leave me
Turn, my own heart [heart’s pulse] and treasure
And you will see the glory, if you return
You denied Peter and Paul
On account of gold and silver
You denied the Queen of Glory
You turned your coat and became ‘minister’
[You turned to the coat of a minister]
Turn, turn, my dear
Turn, my dear and don’t leave me
Whether you come back tomorrow, or ever
Return to the order you were trained in
* Moate: An Móta (< Móta agus bábhún / Moat-and-bailey < La motte castrale), County Westmeath
Incipiunt Libri Sancti Patricii Episcopi.
Ego Patricius, peccator rusticissimus et minimus omnium fidelium et contemptibilis sum apud plurimos, patrem habui Calpornum diaconum filium quendam Potiti, filii Odissi presbyteri, qui fuit in uico Bannauem Taberniae. Villulam enim prope habuit, ubi ego capturam dedi. Annorum eram tunc fere sedecim. Deum uerum ignorabam, et Hyberione in captiuitate adductus sum, cum tot milia hominum, secundum merita nostra, quia a Deo recessimus, et praecepta eius non custodiuimus, et sacerdotibus nostris non oboedientes fuimus, qui nostram salutem admonebant. Et Dominus induxit super nos iram animationis suae, et dispersit nos in gentibus multis, etiam usque ad ultimum terrae, ubi nunc paruitas mea esse uidetur inter alienigenas. Et ibi Dominus aperuit sensum incredulitatis meae, ut uel sero rememorarem dilicta mea, ut conuerterem toto corde ad Dominum meum, qui respexit humilitatem meam et missertus est adoliscentiae et ignorantiae meae, et custodiuit me, antequam scirem eum, et antequam saperem uel distinguerem inter bonum et malum, et muniuit me, et consulatus est mei, ut pater filium.
Inde hautem tacere non possum, neque expedit quidem, tanta beneficia et tantam gratiam, quam mihi dignatus in terra captiuitatis meae, quia haec est retributio nostra, ut post correptionem uel agnitionem Dei, exaltaremur et confiteremur mirabilia eius coram omni natione, quae est sub omni caelo. Quia non est alius deus, nec umquam fuit nec ante, nec erit post hunc, praeter Deum Patrem ingenitum, sine principio, a quo est omne principium, omnia tenentem, ut dicimus; et eius Filium Iesum Christum, qui cum Patre scilicet semper fuisse testamur ante originem saeculi spiritualiter apud Patrem; inenarrabiliter genitum ante omne principium; et per ipsum facta sunt uissibilia et inuisibilia: hominem factum, morte deuicta, in caelis ad Patrem receptum. Et dedit illi omnem potestatem super omne nomen, ut in nomine Iesu omne genu flectatur caelestium, et terrestrium et infernorum, et omnis lingua confiteatur ei, quia Dominus et Deus est Iesus Christus: quem credimus et expectamus aduentum ipsius, mox futurum: iudex uiuorum atque mortuorum, qui reddet unicuique secundum facta sua, et effudit in nobis habunde Spiritum Sanctum donum et pignus inmortalitatis, qui facit credentes et oboedientes ut sint filii Dei et coheredes Christi; quem confitemur et adoramus, unum Deum in Trinitate sacri nominis.
Ipse enim dixit per profetam: ‘Inuoca me in die tribulationis tuae, et liberabo te, et magnificabis me.’’
Tob. 12, 7.
Et iterum inquit: ‘Opera hautem Dei reuelare et confiteri honorificum est.’’
Tamen, etsi in multis inperfectus sum, opto fratribus et cognatis meis scire qualitatem meam, ut possint perspicere uotum animae meae. Non ignoro testimonium Domini mei qui in psalmo testatur: ‘Perdes eos qui loquntur mendacium,’’
Et idem Dominus ‘Verbum otiossum, quod locuti fuerint homines, reddent rationem de eo in die iudicii.’’
Unde autem uehimenter debueram cum timore et tremore metuere hanc sententiam in die illa, ubi nemo se poterit subtrahere uel abscondere, sed omnes omnino reddituri sumus rationem etiam minimorum peccatorum ante tribunal Domini Christi. Quapropter ollim cogitaui scribere, sed et usque nunc hessitaui. Timui enim ne incederem in linguam hominum, quia non dedici sicut et caeteri qui optime itaque iure et sacras literas utroque pari modo combiberunt, ‘z’ ‘incertus liber hic.’ et sermones illorum ex infantia numquam motarunt; sed magis ad perfectum semper addiderunt. Nam sermo et loquela mea translata est in linguam alienam, sicut facile potest probari ex saliua scripturae meae, qualiter sum ego in sermonibus instructus atque eruditus: quia inquit: ‘Sapiens per linguam dinoscetur, et sensus et scientia et doctrina ueritatis.’’
Eccles. 4, 29.
Sed quid prodest excussatio iuxta ueritatem, praesertim cum praesumptione? Quatinus modo ipso adpeto in senectute mea, quod in iuuentute non comparaui; quod obstiterunt peccata mea ut confirmarem quod ante perlegeram. Sed quis me credidit etsi dixero quod ante praefatus sum? Adoliscens, immo peno puer imberbis, capturam dedi antequam scirem quid adpeterem uel quid uitare debueram. Unde ergo hodie erubesco et uehimenter pertimeo denudare imperitiam meam, quia, non disertus, breuitate sermonis explicare nequeo. Sicut enim spiritus gestit, et animus et sensus monstrat adfectus. Sed si itaque datum mihi fuisset sicut et caeteris, uerumtamen non silerem propter retributionem. Et si forte uidetur apud aliquantos me in hoc praeponere cum mea inscientia et tardiori lingua, sicut scriptum est ‘linguae balbutientes uelociter discent loqui pacem,’’Isai. 32, 4
‘quanto magis nos adpetere debemus qui sumus nos aepistola Christi in salutem usque ad ultimum terrae,’’Acts 13, 47.
et si non deserta, sed ratum et fortissimum scripta in cordibus uistris ‘non atramento sed Spiritu Dei uiui.’’2 Cor. 3, 3.
Et iterum Spiritus testatur: ‘et rusticationem ab Altissimo creatam.’’
Eccles. 7, 16
Unde ego primo rusticus, profuga; indoctus scilicet, qui nescio in posterum prouidere. Sed illud scio certissime quia utique, priusquam humiliarer ego, eram uelut lapis qui iacet in luto profundo, et uenit qui potens est, et in sua missericordia sustulit me; et quidem scilicet sursum adleuauit et collocauit me in sua parte. Et inde fortitor debueram exclamare ad retribuendum quoque aliquid Domino pro tantis beneficiis eius, hic et in aeternum, quae mens hominum aestimare non potest. Unde autem ammiramini, magni et pussilli, qui timetis Deum, et uos Domini ignari rethorici, […] audite et scrutamini, quis me stultum excitauit de medio eorum qui uidentur esse sapientes et legis periti et potentes in sermone et in omni re. Et me quidem detestabilem huius mundi prae caeteris inspirauit si talis essem, dummodo hautem, ut ‘cum metu et reuerentia’’Heb. 12, 28
et ‘sine querella’’1 Thess 2, 10; 3, 13; 5, 23
fideliter prodessem genti, ad quam caritas Christi transtulit et donauit me, in uita mea, si dignus fuero, denique ut cum omni humilitate et naturaliter deseruirem illis.
In mensura itaque fidei Trinitatis oportet distinguere, sine reprehensione periculi, notum facere domum Dei, et consulationem aeternam, sine timore fiducialiter Dei nomen ubique expandere, ut etiam post obitum meum exagallias relinquere fratribus et filiis meis, quos in Domino ego babtizaui, tot milia homnium. Et non eram dignus neque talis ut hoc Dominus seruulo suo concederet, post erumpnas et tantas moles, post captiuitatem, post annos multos, in gentem illam tantam gratiam mihi donaret, quod ego aliquando in inuentute mea numquam speraui neque cogitaui.
Sed postquam Hiberione deueueram, cotidie pecora pascebam, et frequens in die orabam, magis ac magis itaque accedebat amor Dei et timor ipsius, et fides augebatur, et spiritus agebatur, ut in die una usque ad centum orationes, et in nocte prope similiter; ut etiam in siluis et in monte manebam, et ante lucem excitabar ad orationem per niuem, per gelu, per pluiam; et nihil mali sentiebam, neque ulla pigritia erat in me, sicut modo uideo, quia tunc spiritus in me feruebat. Et ibi scilicet quadam nocte in somno audiui uocem dicentem mihi: ‘Bene ieiunas, cito iturus ad patriam tuam.’ Et iterum post paululum tempus audiui responsum dicentem mihi: ‘Ecce, nauis tua parata est.’ Et non erat prope: sed forto habebat ducenta milia passus, et ibi numquam fueram nec ibi notum quemquam de hominibus habebam. Et deinde postmodum conuersus sum in fugam, et intermissi hominem cum quo fueram sex annis. Et ueni in uirtute Dei qui uiam meam ad bonum dirigebat, et nihil metuebam donec perueni ad nauem illam. Et illa die qua perueni, profecta est nauis de loco suo, et locutus sum ut haberem unde nauigarem cum illis. Et gubernatori displicuit illi, et acriter cum indignatione respondit: ‘Nequaquam tu nobiscum adpetes ire.’ Et cum haec audiissem, separaui me ab illis, ut uenirem ad tegoriolum ubi hospitabam, et in itenere caepi orare, et antequam orationem consummarem, audiui unum ex illis, et fortiter exclamabat post me: ‘Veni cito, quia uocant te homines isti.’ Et statim ad illos reuersus sum, et coeperunt mihi dicere: ‘Veni, quia ex fide recipimus te. Fac nobiscum amicitiam, quomodo uolueris.’ Et in illa die itaque reppuli sugere mammellas eorum propter timorem Dei, quia gentes erant. Sed uerum tamen ab illis speraui uenire in fidem Iesu Christi. Et ob hoc obtinui cum illis et protinus nauigauimus.
Et post triduum terram caepimus, et .xx. viii. dies per disertum iter fecimus. Et cibus defuit illis, et fames inualuit super eos. Et alio die coepit gubernator mihi dicere ‘Quid est, Christiane? Tu dicis Deus tuus magnus et omnipotens est. Quare ergo pro nobis orare non potes? quia nos a fame periclitamur. Difficile est, enim umquam ut aliquem hominem uideamus.’ Ego enim euidenter dixi illis: ‘Conuertemini ex fide et ex toto corde ad Dominum Deum meum, cui nihil est inpossibile, ut hodie cibum mittat uobis in uiam uestram usque dum satiamini, quia ubique habundat illi.’ Et adiuuante Deo, ita factum est. Ecco grex porcorum in uia ante oculos nostros apparuit, et multos ex illis interfecerunt, et ibi duas noctes manserunt et bene refecti. Et canes eorum repleti sunt, quia multi ex illis defecerunt et secus uiam semiuiui relicti sunt. Et post haec summas gratias egerunt Deo, et ego honorificatus sum sub oculis eorum et ex hac die abundanter cibum habuerunt. Etiam mel siluistre inuenierunt, et mihi partem obtulerunt. Et unus ex illis dixit: ‘Immolaticum est.’ Deo gratias. Exinde nihil gustaui. Eadem uero nocte eram dormiens, et fortiter temptauit me Satanas, quod memor ero ‘quandiu fuero in hoc corpore.’’
2 Petr 1, 13
Et cicidit super me ueluti saxum ingens, et nihil membrorum meorum praeualui. Sed unde mihi uenit ignoro in spiritum ut Heliam uocarem. Et in hoc uidi in coelum solem oriri; et dum clamarem Heliam uiribus meis, ecce splendor solis illius decidit super me, et statim discussit a me omnem grauitudinem. Et credo quod a Christo Domino meo subuentus sum et Spiritus eius iam tunc clamabat pro me, et spero quod sic erit in die presurae meae, sicut in aeuanguelio inquit Dominus: ‘Non uos estis qui loquimini, sed Spiritus Patris uestri qui loquitur in uobis.’’Matth. 10, 20.
Et iterum post annos multos adhuc capturam dedi. Ea nocte prima itaque mansi cum illis. Responsum autem diuinum audiui dicentem mihi: ‘Duobus autem mensibus eris eum illis.’ Quod ita factum est. Nocte illa sexagensima liberauit me Dominus de manibus eorum. Etiam in itenere praeuidit nobis cibum et ignem et siccitatem cotidie, donec quarto decimo die peruenimus ad homines , sicut superius insinuaui. Viginti et octo dies per disertum iter fecimus, et ea nocte qua peruenimus ad homines , de cibo uero nihil habuimus.
Et iterum post paucos annos in Britannis eram cum parentibus meis, qui me ut filium susciperunt, et ex fide rogauerunt me, ut uel modo ego, post tantas tribulationes quas ego pertuli, nusquam ab illis discederem. Et ibi scilicet in sinu noctis uirum uenientem quasi de Hiberione, cui nomen Victoricus , cum aepistolis innumerabilibus uidi; et dedit mihi unam ex his, et legi principium epistolae continentem “Vox Hyberionacum .” Et dum recitabam principium epistolae putabam enim ipse in mente audire uocem ipsorum qui erant iuxta siluam Focluti , quae est prope mare occidentale. Et sic exclamauerunt : ‘Rogamus te, sancte puer, ut uenias et adhuc ambules inter nos. Et ualde ‘conpunctus sum corde’’
cf. Acts 2, 37 ‘compuncti sunt corde’; Ps. 108, 17 ‘hominem … compunctum corde’
, et ualde amplius non potui legere; et sic expertus sum. Deo gratias, quia post plurimos annos praestitit illis Dominus secundum clamorem illorum. Et alia nocte, nescio, Deus scit, utrum in me an iuxta me, uerbis peritissimis quae ego audiui et non potui intellegere nisi ad postremum orationis sic effatus est: Qui dedit animam suam pro te ipse est qui loquitur in te.’ Et sic expertus sum gaudibundus. Et iterum uidi in me ipsum orantem, et erat quasi intra corpus meum, et audiui super me, hoc super interiorem hominem, et ibi fortiter orabat gemitibus. Et inter haec stupebam et ammirabam et cogitabam quis esset qui in me orabat. Sed ad postremum orationis sic effatus est ut sit Spiritus . Et sic expertus sum et recordatus sum Apostolo dicente: ‘Spiritus adiuuat infirmitatis orationis nostrae. Nam quod oremus sicut oportet, nescimus, sed ipse Spiritus postulat pro nobis gemitibus inenarrabilibus ,’’Rom. 8, 26.
quae uerbis exprimi non possunt. Et iterum: ‘Dominus aduocatus noster postulat pro nobis.’’Cf. 1 John 2, I.
Et quando temptatus sum ab aliquantis senioribus meis, qui uenerunt, ob peccata mea, contra laboriosum episcopatcum meum, utique in illo die fortiter inpulsus sum, ut caderem hic et in eternum: sud Dominus pepercit proselito et perigrino propter nomen suum, benigne, et ualde mihi subuenit in hac conculcatione, quod in labem et in opprobrium non male deueni. Deum oro, ut non illis in peccatum reputetur occasio: nam post annos triginta inuenerunt me, et aduersus uerbum, quod confessus fueram antequod essem diaconus. Propter anxietatem mesto animo insinuaui amicissimo meo, quae in pueritia mea una die gesseram, imo in una hora, quia necdum preualebam. Nescio, Deus scit, si habebam tunc annos quindecim, et Deum unum non credebam neque ex infantia mea: sed in morte et in incredulitate mansi, donec ualde castigatus sum; et in ueritate humiliatus sum a fame et nudidate; et cotidie contra Hiberionem non sponte pergebam, donec prope deficiebam. Sed haec potius mihi bene fuit, quia ex hoc emendatus sum a Domino, et aptauit me ut hodie essem quod aliquando longe a me erat, ut ego curas haberem aut satagerem pro salute aliorum, quando autem tunc etiam de me ipso non cogitabam. Igitur in illo die quo reprobatus sum a memoratis supradictis ad noctem illam uidi in uisu noctis scriptum erat contra faciem meam sine honore. Et inter haec audiui responsum dicentem mihi: ‘Male audiuimus “> faciem designati nudato nomine.’ Nec sic praedixit ‘Male uidisti,’ sed ‘Male uidimus,’ quasi sibi se iunxisset : sicut dixit: ‘Qui uos tanguit , tanguit pupillam oculi mei.’’Zach. 2, 8.
Idcirco gratias ago ei, qui me in omnibus confortauit, ut non in me inpediret a profectione qua statueram, et de mea quoque opera quam a Christo Domino meo didiceram. Sed magis ex eo sensi in me uirtutem non paruam, et fides mea probata est coram Deo et hominibus.
Unde autem audenter dico, non in me reprehendit conscientia mea hic et in futurum. Testem Deum habeo quia non sum mentitus in sermonibus quos ego retuli. Sed magis doleo pro amicissimo meo, cur hoc meruimus audire tale responsum. Cui ego credidi etiam animam. Et comperi ab aliquantis fratribus ante defensionem illam, quod ego non interfui, nec in Brittanniis eram, nec a me orietur, ut et ille in mea absentia pro me pulsaret. Etiam mihi ipse ore suo dixerat: ‘Ecce dandus es tu ad gradum episcopatus’: quo non eram dignus: sed unde uenit illi postmodum, ut coram cunctis bonis et malis in me puplice dehonestaret, quod ante sponte et letus indulserat? Est Dominus, qui maior omnibus est. Satis dico: sed tamen debeo abscondere donum Dei, quod largitus est nobis in terra captiuitatis meae, quia tunc fortiter inquisiui eum, et ibi inueni illum, et seruauit me ab onmibus iniquitatibus, sic credo, propter inhabitantem Spiritum eius, qui operatus est usque in hanc diem in me. Audenter rursus sed scit Deus si mihi homo hoc effatus fuisset: forsitan tacuissem propter caritatem Christi.
Unde ego indefessam gratiam ago Deo meo, qui me fidelem seruauit in die temptationis meae; ita ut hodie confidenter offeram illi sacrificium, ut hostiam viventem animam meam Christo Domino meo, qui me seruauit ab onmibus angustiis meis, ut et dicam: quis ego sum, Domino, uel quae est uocatio mea, qui mihi tantam diuinitatem cooperuisti? ita ut hodie in gentibus constanter exultarem et magnificarem nomen tuum ubicumque loco fuero; necnon in secundis, sed etiam in pressuris; ut quicquid mihi euenerit, siue bonum siue malum, aequaliter debeo suscipere, et Deo gratias semper agere: qui mihi ostendit ut indubitabilem eum sine fine crederem, ut qui me audierit, ut et ego inscius sim in nouissimis diebus hoc opus tam pium et tam mirificum adire adgrederer; ita ut imitarer quospiam illos quos ante Dominus iam olim predixerat prenuntiaturos euangelium suum ‘in testimonium omnibus gentibus ante finem mundi’’
Cf. Matth. 24, 14; Conf. 40
. Quod ita ergo ut uidimus, itaque suppletum est. Ecce testes sumus, quia euangelium predicatum est usque ubi nemo ultra est.
Longum est hautem totum per singula enarrare laborem meum uel per partes. Breuiter dicam qualiter piissimus Deus de seruitute saepe me liberauit et de periculis duodecim quibus periclitata est anima mea, praeter insidias multas et quae uerbis exprimere non ualeo, nec iniuriam legentibus faciam. Sed Deum auctorem habeo qui nouit omnia etiam antequam fiant; ut me pauperculum pupillum ideo tamen responsum diuinum creberrime admonuit. Unde mihi haec sapientia, quae in me non erat, qui nec numerum dierum noueram, neque Deum sapiebam? Unde mihi postmodum donum tam magnum tam salubre Deum agnoscere uel diligere, ut patriam et parentes amitterem, et munera multa quae mihi offerebantur cum fletu et lacrymis? Et offendi illos necnon contra votum aliquantis de senioribus meis: sed gubernante Deo nullo modo consensi neque adquieui illis: non mea gratia, sed Deus qui uincit in me: et restitit illis onmibus, ut ego ueneram ad Hybernas gentes euangelium praedicare, et ab incredulis contumelias perferre, ut audirem obprobrium peregrinationis meae, et persecutionis multas usque ad uincula, et ut darem ingenuitatem meam pro utilitate aliorum.
Et si dignus fuero, promptus sum, ut etiam animam meam incunctanter et libentissime ponam pro nomine eius: et ibi opto inpendere eam usque ad mortem, si Dominus indulgeret. Quia ualde debitor sum Deo qui mihi tantam gratiam donauit, ut populi multi per me in Deum renascerentur , et ut clerici ubique illis ordinarentur, ad plebem nuper uenientem ad credulitatem, quam sumpsit Dominus ab extremis terrae, sicut olim promisserat per profetas suos: ‘Ad te gentes uenient et dicent ‘sicut falso comparauerunt patres nostri idola et non est in eis utilitas ad te gentes ueniunt et dicent.’ ’’
Jer. 16, 19.
Et iterum: ‘Posui te lumen in gentibus ut sis in salutem usque ad extremum terrae.’’Isai. 49, 6, Acts 13, 47.
Et ibi uolo expectare promissum ipsius, qui utique numquam fallit sicut in aeuanguelio pollicetur: ‘Venient ab oriente et occidente, et ab austro et ab aquilone, et recumbent cum Abraam et Issac et Iacob,’’
sicut credimus ab omni mundo uenturi sint credentes.
Idcirco itaque oportet bene et dilegenter piscare sicut Dominus praemonet et docet, dicens: ‘Venite post me, et faciam uos fieri piscatores hominum.’’
Matt. 4, 19.
Et iterum: ‘Ecce, mitto piscatores et uenatores multos, dicit Deus,’’Jer. 16, 16.
et caetera. Unde autem ualde oportebat retia nostra tendere, ita ut multitudo copiossa et turba Deo caperetur, et ubique essent clerici, qui babtizarent et exhortarent populum indegentem et dissiderantem; sicut Dominus in aeuanguelio ammonet et docet dicens: ‘Euntes ergo nunc, docete omnes gentes, babtizantes eas in nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti:’’
Matth. 28, 20
Et etiam una Scotta benedicta, Scotta genitiua, nobilis, pulcherrima, adulta erat, quam ego baptizaui: et post paucos dies una causa uenit ad nos: insinuauit namque nobis responsum accepisse a nutu Dei, et monuit eam ut esset uirgo Christi, et ipsa Deo proximaret. Deo gratias, sexta ab hac die optime et auidissime arripuit illud, quod etiam omnes uirgines Dei ita hoc faciunt; non sponte patrum earum; sed persecutionem patiantur et inproperia falsa a parentibus suis, nihilominus plus augetur numerus: et de genere nostro quae ibi Christo natae sunt, nescimus numerum eorum, preter uiduas et continentes. Sed et illae maxime laborant, quae seruitio detinentur: usque ad terrores et minas adsidiuae peruaserunt: sed Dominus gratiam dedit multis ex ancillis meis: nam etsi uetantur, tamen fortiter imitantur.
Unde autem possem etsi uoluero amittere illas, et pergere in Brittannias; et libentissime paratus irem, quasi ad patriam et parentes: non id solum, sed etiam usque Gallias uisitare fratres et ut uiderem faciem sanctorum Domini mei: scit Deus quod ego id ualde optabam. ‘Sed alligatus Spiritu’’
Acts 20, 22.
(qui mihi protestatur, si hoc fecero, ut futurum reum me esse designat) et timeo pedere laborem, quem inchoaui; et non ego, sed Christus Dominus, qui mihi imperauit ut uenirem, esse me cum illis residuum aetatis meae; si Dominus uoluerit et custodierit me ab omni uia mala, ut non peccem coram illo. Spero autem hoc debueram: sed memetipsum non credo, quamdiu fuero in ‘hoc corpore mortis:’’Rom. 7, 24, marg. [and cf. 2 Petr. 1, 13]
quia fortis est qui cotidie nititur subuertere me a fide et proposita castitate religionis non ficte quam seruabo usque in finem uite meae Christo Domino meo. Sed caro inimica semper trachit ad mortem, id est, ad inlecebras in infelicitate perficiendas. Et scio ex parte quare uitam perfectam ego non egi, sicut et ceteri credentes: sed confiteor Domino meo et non erubesco in conspectu ipsius, quia non mentior: ex quo cognoui eum a iuuentute mea, creuit in me amor Dei et timor ipsius, et usque nunc, fauente Domino, ‘fidem seruaui.’’2 Tim. 4, 7.
Rideat autem et insultet qui uoluerit, ego non silebo neque abscondo signa et mirabilia, qua mihi a Domino ministrata sunt ante multos annos quam fuerunt, quasi qui ‘nouit omnia etiam ante tempora secularia.’’
See Acts 15, 18.
Unde autem debuero sine cessatione Deo gratias agere, qui sepe indulsit insipientiae meae et neglegentiae meae. Et de loco non in unoquoque, ut non mihi uehementer irasceretur, cui adiutor datus sum, et non cito adquieui, secundum quod mihi ostensum fuerat, et sicut Spiritus suggerebat. Et misertus est mihi Dominus in milia milium: quia uidit in me quod paratus eram; sed quod mihi pro his nesciebam de statu meo quid facerem: quia multi hanc legationem prohibebant, etiam inter seipsos post tergum meum narrabant et dicebant: ‘Iste quare se mittit in periculum inter hostes, qui Deum non nouerunt?’ Non ut causa malitie; sed non sapiebat illis, sicut et ego ipse testor, intellegi, propter rusticitatem meam. Et non cito agnoui gratiam, quae tunc erat in me: nunc mihi capit, quod ante debueram uocanti Deo parere.
Nunc ergo simpliciter insinuaui fratribus et conseruis meis, qui mihi crediderunt: propter quod praedixi et praedico ad roborandam et confirmandam fidem uestram. Utinam ut et uos imitemini maiora, et potiora faciatis. Hoc erit gloria mea: quia ‘filius sapiens gloria patris est.’’
Pro. 10, 1.
Vos scitis et Deus qualiter apud uos conuersatus sum a iuuentute mea; et fide ueritatis et sinceritate cordis, etiam ad gentes illas, inter quas habito; ego fidem illis praestaui et praestabo. Deus scit, neminem illorum circumueni, nec cogito, propter Deum et ecclesiam ipsius; ne excitem illis et nobis omnibus persecutionem, et ne per me blasphemaretur nomen Domini: quia scriptum est: ‘Ve homini per quem nomen Domini blasphematur.’’Levit. 24, 10.
Nam etsi imperitus sum nominibus, tamen conatus sum quippiam seruare me, etiam et fratribus Christianis et uirginibus Christi, et mulieribus religiosis, quae mihi ultronea munuscula donabant, et super altare iactabant ex ornamentis suis, et iterum reddebam illis; et aduersus me scandalizabantur cur hoc faciebam. Sed ego id faciebam propter spem perennitatis, ut me in onmibus caute propterea conseruarem; ita ut me in aliquo titulo infideles non carperent, uel ministerium seruitutis meae: nec, etiam in minimo, incredulis locum darem infamare siue detractare.
Forte autem quando baptizaui tot milia hominum, sperauerim ab aliquo illorum vel dimedio scriptule? ‘Dicite mihi, et reddam uobis.’’
1 Sam. 12, 3.
Aut quando ordinauit ubique Dominus clericos per modicitatem meam, et ministerium gratis distribui illis? ‘Si poposci ab aliquo illorum uel pretium uel calciamenti mei, dicite aduersus me et reddam uobis’’1 Sam. 12, 3.
magis. Ego inpendi pro uobis, ut me caperent; et inter uos et ubique pergebam caussa vestra in multis periculis, etiam usque ad exteras partes, ubi nemo ultra erat et ubi numquam aliquis peruenerat, qui baptizaret, aut clericos ordinaret, aut populum consummaret: donante Domino, diligenter et libentissime pro salute uestra omnia generaui. Interim premia dabam regibus, propter quod dabam mercedem filiis ipsorum, qui mecum ambulant: et nihilominus comprehenderunt me cum comitibus meis. Et illa die auidissime cupiebant interficere me. Sed tempus nondum uenerat. Et omnia quecumque nobiscum inuenerunt rapuerunt illud, et me ferro uinxerunt. Et quarto decimo die absoluit me Dominus de potestate eorum, et quicquid nostrum fuit, redditum est nobis propter Deum et necessarios amicos, quos ante preuidimus.
Vos autem experti estis quantum erogaui illis, qui iudicabant per omnes regiones, quos ego frequentius uisitabam: censeo enim non minimum quam pretium quindecim hominum distribui illis. Ita, ut me fruamini et ego uobis semper fruar in Deum, non me penitet nec satis est mihi, adhuc inpendo et superinpendam. ‘Potens est Dominus ut det mihi postmodum, ut meipsum inpendat pro animabus uestris.’’
2 Cor. 12, 15.
Ecce testem Deum inuoco in animam meam quia non mentior, neque ut sit occassio adulationis uel auaritiae, scripserim uobis, neque ut honorem spero ab aliquo uiro. Sufficit enim honor qui non mentitur. Sed uideo iam in praesenti saeculo me supra modum exaltatus sum a Domino. Et non eram dignus neque talis ut hoc mihi praestaret; dum scio melius conuenit paupertas et calamitas quam diuitiae et diliciae . ‘Sed et Christus Dominus pauper fuit pro nobis.’’
2 Cor. 8, 9.
Ego uero miser et infelix, etsi opes uoluero, iam non habeo, nequo meipsum iudico’’1 Cor. 4, 3.
: quia quotidie spero aut internicionem, aut circumueniri, aut redigi in seruitatem, siue occassio cuiuslibet fieri. ‘Sed nihil horum uereor’’Acts 20, 22.
propter promissa celorum: quia iactaui meipsum in manus Dei omnipotentis, qui ubique dominatur, sicut propheta dicit: ‘Iacta cogitatum tuum in Deum, et ipse te enutriet.’’Ps. 54, 23.
Ecce nunc commendo animam meam fidelissimo Deo meo, pro quo legationem fungor in ignobilitate mea: sed quia personam non accipit, et elegit me ad hoc officium, ut unus essem de suis minimis minister. ‘Unde autem retribuam illi pro omnibus quae retribuit mihi,’’
Ps. 116, 12.
sed quid dicam uel quid promittam Domino meo? Quia nihil ualeo nisi ipse mihi dederit: ‘sed scrutatur corda et renes;’’Ps. 7, 9.
quia satis et nimis cupio, et paratus eram, ut donaret mihi bibere calicem eius, sicut indulsit ceteris amantibus se. Quia propter non contiugunt mihi a Deo meo ut numquam amittam plebem suam, quam adquisiuit in ultimis terrae. Oro Deum ut det mihi perseuerantiam, et dignetur ut reddam illi me testem fidelem usque ad transitum meum propter Deum meum. Et, si aliquid boni umquam imitatus sum propter Deum meum quem diligo, peto illi, ut det mihi ut cum illis proselitis et captiuis pro nomine suo effundam sanguinem meum, etsi ipsum etiam caream sepulturam, aut miserissime cadauer per singula membra diuidatur; canibus, aut bestiis aspersis, aut uolucres caeli comederent illud. Certissme reor, si mihi hoc incurrisset, lucratus sum animam cum corporo meo: ‘quia sine ulla dubitatione’’Ruth 3, 13
in die illa resurgemus in claritate solis, hoc est in gloria Christi Iesu, redemptoris nostri quasi filii Dei uiui et cohoredes Christi’’Cf. Rom. 8, 16-17, 29
, et ‘conformes future imaginis ipsius’’Rom. 8, 29
: quoniam ex ipso, et per ipsum, et in ipso regnaturi sumus. Nam sol iste quem uidemus, illo iubente, propter nos cotidie oritur, sed numquam regnabit et neque permanebit splendor eius: sed et omnes qui adorant eum in penam miseri male deuenient. Nos autem qui credimus et adoramus solem uerum Iesum Christum, qui numquam interibit; neque qui fecerat uoluntatem ipsius interibit ‘sed manebit in aeternum quomodo Christus manet in aeternum,’’Cf. 1 John 2, 17.
qui regnat cum Deo Patro omnipotente et cum Spiritu Sancto ante secula, et nunc et per omnia secula seculorum, amen. Ecce iterum iterumque breuiter exponam uerba Confessionis meae. Testificor in ueritate et in exultatione cordis coram Deo et sanctis angelis eius, quia numquam habui ullam occasionem preter euangelium et promissa illius, ut umquam redirem ad gentem illam, unde autem prius uix euaseram.
Sed praecor credentibus et timentibus Deum, quicumque dignatus fuerit inspicere uel recipere hanc scripturam, quam Patricius peccator, indoctus scilicet, Hiberione conscripsit, ut nemo umquam dicat, quod mea ignorantia si aliquid pusillum egi uel demonstrauerim secundum Dei placitum; sed arbitramini et uerissime credatur quod donum Dei fuisset. Et haec est Confessio mea antequam morior.
Huc usque uolumen quod Patricius manu conscripsit sua. Septima decima Martii die translatus est Patricius ad caelos.
Troparion (Tone 3)
Holy Bishop Patrick,
Faithful shepherd of Christ’s royal flock,
You filled Ireland with the radiance of the Gospel:
The mighty strength of the Trinity!
Now that you stand before the Savior,
Pray that He may preserve us in faith and love!
Kontakion (Tone 4)
From slavery you escaped to freedom in Christ’s service:
He sent you to deliver Ireland from the devil’s bondage.
You planted the Word of the Gospel in pagan hearts.
In your journeys and hardships you rivaled the Apostle Paul!
Having received the reward for your labors in heaven,
Never cease to pray for the flock you have gathered on earth,
Holy bishop Patrick!
+ + +
✝ I believe in one God the Father almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
✝ And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages, Light of Light, true God of true God, begotten, not made, of one essence with the Father, by whom all things were made. Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and became man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. And He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead; of His kingdom there shall be no end.
✝ And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life, Who proceeds from the Father, Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spoke by the prophets.
✝ In one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church; I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins; I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the age to come. Amen.
✝ 我信ず、一の神、父、全能者、天と地、見ゆると見えざる萬物を造りし主を。✝ 又信ず一の主イイスス・ハリストス、神の獨生の子、萬世の前に父より生れ、光よりの光、眞の神よりの眞の神、生れし者にて、造られしに非ず、父と一體にして、萬物彼に造られ、我等人人の爲、又我等の救の爲に天より降り、聖神及び童貞女マリヤより身を取り、人となり、我等の爲にポンティイ・ピラトの時十字架に釘うたれ、苦を受け、葬られ、第三日に聖書に應ひて復活し、天に升り、父の右に座し、光榮を顯して生ける者と死せし者とを審判する爲に還來り、其國終なからんを。
✝ Верую во Единого Бога Отца Вседержителя, Творца неба и земли, видимым же всем и невидимым.
✝ И во Единого Господа Иисуса Христа, Сына Божия, Единородного, Иже от Отца рожденного прежде всех век. Света от света, Бога истинна от Бога истинна, рожденна не сотворенна, единосущна Отцу, Имже вся быша. Нас ради, человек, и нашего ради спасения сшедшего с небес, и воплотившагося от Духа Свята и Марии Девы, и вочеловечшася. Распятого же за ны при Понтийском Пилате, И страдавша, и погребена. И воскресшаго в третий день по писанием. И возшедшаго на небеса, и седяща одесную Отца. И паки грядущаго со славою судити живым и мертвым, Егоже Царствию не будет конца.
✝ И в Духа Святого, Господа Животворящаго,Иже от Отца исходящаго, Иже со Отцем и Сыном споклоняема с сславима, глаголовшаго пророки.
✝ Во единую Святую Соборную и Апостольскую Церковь.
✝ Исповедаю едино крещение во оставление грехов.
✝ Чаю воскресение мертвых, и жизни будущаго века. Аминь.