I want to sincerely wish everyone a happy St. Patrick's Day. My family is mostly Irish and my children were born in Cleveland, Ohio, a place that celebrates the Irish in a big way. Our community was filled to the brim with Irish Catholics. This was/is a day of celebration but also of reverence for us. It was more than just a day to drink green beer and go to parties and parades. It's a day filled with going to mass and praying for a unified Ireland. You see, my family is both green and orange Irish. I have always told my kids that being both, combined, makes them a lovely color of sh*t brown. That is what truly makes them Irish. Nobody can bullsh*t like an Irishman!
In the news recently there was a violent episode that threatened the peace in Ireland. Luckily, both sides came together in protest in the streets, Catholics and Protestants, hand in hand showing unity and hope that they may always be able to live in peace, together. Seeing this reminded me that people do change. It isn't easy and it isn't quick, but they can and do change. Where once the streets ran red from blood spilled on both sides, they are now filled with people of all faiths keeping the peace.
Today as I make our corned beef and cabbage, red potatoes, and fresh bread in preparation of our family celebration The Irish Blessing will hold new meaning for me. Tonight as we recite the prayer of St. Patrick, I will know that he smiles on all of the Irish people. Our final prayer for our blessed Erin is to pray for continued peace in a place that was so often divided. My family in it's own way has brought both sides of the Irish together celebrating all the colors of the Irish flag. My children represent the future of Ireland as Irish Americans living as an example that the melting pot more often than not brings out the best of our heritage. Although my children were raised Catholic, celebrating the green of the day, they have a great appreciation for their orange heritage and continue to remember the one constant in Ireland is we all bleed red.
Erin Go Bragh! (Ireland forever!)