Guest essay adapted from a piece by Francis Nigel Lee, after James Akin.
St. Patrick was born into a British Christian family circa A.D. 389. His grandfather was a presbyter. His father Calpurnius was a deacon. His real birth-name was the Brythonic Succat. The Irish Gaelicized his name to Padraic, suggesting his originally Brythonic name of Padraig (which too is sometimes found in Erse).
The extant writings of Patrick are in ‘Dog-Latin,’ which would rather evidence his native language was Brythonic, and Latin (then the international language), only his second tongue.
He writes that as youths he and his companions “turned away from God, and did not keep his commandments, and did not obey our [presbyters], who used to remind us of our salvation” (Conf. 1). Later, after his conversion and to prepare [for the ministry], he traveled to France and spent around two decades as a monk. Gaulic monks were then non-celibate and non-Roman.
He was ordained a Presbyter (like his married British grandfather) and in 432 went to Ireland. When Palladius died on a trip to Britain, St. Germanus—German the Gaul chose Patrick as his successor and consecrated him bishop.
Patrick experienced enormous success in converting the Irish, and three assistant bishops from France were sent to help him, among them St. Sechnall (aka Secundinus).
Within his generation, God’s grace had transformed the Irish into a Christian and a Proto-Protestant catholic (universal) Christian people. The Irish only became Roman Catholic much later in the twelfth century, about the time Pope Adrian purported to donate Ireland to England.
Leo the Great (Bishop of Rome and the first Roman Catholic Pope) personally confirmed Patrick’s full adherence to the Primitive-Catholic faith. Padraig was Proto-Protestant Catholic, and so fellowshipped with other Bible-believing Christians in Britain, Gaul, and elsewhere.
The two writings from his pen that survive –his Confession and Letter to the Soldiers of Coroticus –are both in Dog-Latin, which proclaims his Proto-Protestantism, not only to Britons but also to Irishmen, Gauls, and all others who could not read Padraig’s native Brythonic.
The blarney is the apocryphal Roman Catholic rewrite of the historical Padraig!
Dr. Francis Nigel Lee (5 December 1934 – 23 December 2011)…was one in a million, a diamond of the brightest quality, an amazing scholar who earned a huge number of advanced degrees in Christian Theology and Law. The Reverend Professor-Emeritus Advocate., Dr. Lee, LLB. D,JUR., D.C.L, PH,D., TH.D was also a down to earth, now in Heaven, Christian gentleman, husband and father.—Jerry Nordskog
Nordskog Publishing received the original of this essay from Dr. Lee in March 2010.
Used by Permission