I ran across a book a month or so ago called “The Story of St. Patrick’s Day” which gives a great first introduction into the Christian origins of the holiday:
One thing that the book touches upon is how St. Patrick used the Shamrock to explain the concept of the Trinity to the Irish people. Shaan and I have been reading the book the last several weeks and we recently decided to make our own Shamrock craft to go along with the story and prepare for the holiday:
I traced the Shamrock shape and had him help me cut it out with his special kid-friendly scissors. I also traced the images (of the cross, church, and dove) and had him color them in with markers. We discussed why each image was used (the cross because Jesus died on the cross, the church because that is the physical location where we go and worship God the Father on Sundays, and the dove because of the story where the Spirit descended on Jesus like a dove). I also found a great poem in an Oriental Trading magazine (random!) that I read after we completed our craft:
“Just like the leaves on each shamrock I see,
there are three parts to the Holy Trinity.
First is God the Father, then Jesus His Only Son
With the Holy Spirit together, they are three in one.”
All in all, I thought the book was a great buy for young children and the craft was really easy to do (what can be easier than scissors and markers?) I am all about simplicity. Shaan now remembers the three components of the Trinity (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) thanks to this book and our discussions during craft time. So, it was certainly worthwhile! If it’s too late for you to get a copy of the book in time for St. Patrick’s Day or if you don’t want to spend money on it, there are lots of summaries of the history of St. Patrick online that you could use to help you teach the story to your children. Here’s an example of one that I found:
Good Luck teaching your young ones! In the spirit of the holiday, I’ll leave you with a traditional Irish blessing:
“May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rain fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.”