So here’s the truth of it. We do have the name of St. Patrick’s hometown. It’s a place called Bannavem Taburniae in Roman Britain, as St. Patrick states himself in his autobiographical Confessio.
The trouble is, Britain is a big place and we actually don’t know for sure where Bannavem Taburniae is. Some say it is in modern-day Cumbria in northwestern England, some say Scotland, some say Wales.
Wherever he was originally from, he wasn’t from Ireland—which might shock you!
Patrick was kidnapped from Roman Britain in the first half of the 5th century when he was just sixteen and taken to slavery in Ireland. After six years of slavery—during which time he grew more fervent in his faith, learned the Celtic language, and acquired a deep knowledge of the Celtic religion and culture—he (miraculously) managed to escape back home.
Desirous now of religious life, he studied in Gaul and was ordained by St. Germain of Auxerre. He wanted to return to Ireland as a missionary, and even had a vision, recounted in the Confessio, in which he heard the people of Ireland beseeching him to return.
Return he did, right back to the land and the people that had enslaved him. And that’s how the Faith took root in the Emerald Isle: through the courage of St. Patrick, proclaiming Christ to a pagan country.
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