Jeremiah 1.4-9; Psalm 116; Luke 10.1-12,17-20
It is all but impossible to separate the legendary from the historical in the story of Patrick (c390-c461). He was evidently captured by raiders at the age of 16 and taken to Ireland as a slave where he remained for 6 years, using this time, in his own words, as a time to pray. After escaping, he probably studied in Gaul (modern-day France) and was ordained a priest. Around the year 432 he returned to Ireland as a missionary bishop, setting up his See at Armagh from which he travelled extensively especially in the north of the island. His extant writings display a sincere simplicity and deep pastoral care, devoted to abolishing paganism and to consolidating a strong and faithful church throughout the country.