Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Why I wear orange on St Patrick's Day

St. Patrick's Day is on March 17th.  It is a day when everyone dresses in green, drinks beer, eats boiled dinner, and celebrates...Saint Patrick...the patron saint of Ireland? And March 17th is the day  that Saint Patrick rid all the snakes out of Ireland, or something?

Why do we celebrate?

I find it fascinating how many people just blindly do things without knowing anything at all about why.  Maybe it is because I am a naturally curious person. I want to know the history of things.  I can't even learn to make a new dish without knowing the country of origin, traditions around it, etc. In the situation of the color green and St. Patrick's Day, Saint Patrick used the clover and its three leaves to explain the holy trinity to pagan Irishmen.

This is the first reason I wear orange.  Green is for the Catholics in Ireland, people who support the north, the protestants, wear orange.  Now I don't really support either side.  My family is descendant of Irish Catholic on both sides, but I was raised protestant.  But in general I am not from Ireland, I am not religious, I have no opinion on the the catholic protestant struggle in Ireland.  I wear orange to make that point that most people do not know why green. Green is the color for the Catholics. Orange is the color for the protestants, and some say the white on the flag between them is the hope of peace between them.

The second reason is that growing up my grandmother and her best friend would wear orange shirts to the Boston St. Patty's Day Parade to stir stuff up.  In South Boston, especially at that time, people knew the significance of the orange shirt.  The 'Sainted Sisters,' as they were known, like to stir things up.  My grandmother died two years ago, so I carry that tradition along.  

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