VIRTUE #1: ASSERTIVENESS
Born into an aristocratic family somewhere in Scotland (part of the Roman Empire at that time) Patrick turned away from organized religion as a rebellious youth. We honor young people that stand up for what they believe is right and find their own way in life.
VIRTUE #2: DETERMINATION
At the age 15 or 16 he was kidnapped by Irish marauders. As a result of his sad fate, the enslaved Patrick turned to prayer as a balm to his troubled soul. He affirmed that some day that he would return home. We honor teenagers that never give up on their dreams and persevere until they meet their goals.
VIRTUE #3: TRUSTWORTHINESS
Miraculously, he escaped from his captors and finally made it back home. Keeping the promise he made during his prayers, he became a priest and returned to Ireland for the purpose of teaching and spreading the lessons of his renewed faith. We’ve got to honor anyone who keeps their promise—especially when they give up the comforts of an aristocratic lifestyle.
VIRTUE #4: IDEALISM
When Patrick returned to Ireland he was ‘a man of the church’. Despite living in a mud hut among a warrior society when paganism was the norm, he spread the timeless truths of love and forgiveness. He used words and an approach he knew the wild, illiterate, Celtic-speaking Irish people could understand, much to the displeasure of his bosses back at the Vatican. Although the church hierarchy reprimanded him, Patrick refused to back down. He stayed true to his ideals and cared about what was right and meaningful in life. He dared to have big dreams for the people of Ireland and he acted as if they were possible.
VIRTUE #5: COURAGE
According to the book “How The Irish Saved Civilization” by Thomas Cahill, in addition to his faith, Patrick’s sobriety was one of the reasons why he was so effective at converting Ireland from a land of chaos to a land of peace. A person whose courage and faith is stronger than their fear, allowing them to sleep without the ‘goddess of intoxication’, deserves to be honored.