St. Patrick’s Day: Observances and Dangers

Postcard from 1912 for “St. Patrick’s Day”


March 17th is often observed as St. Patrick’s Day. Some see it as a Catholic holiday, while others mainly an Irish holiday.

There are many items in news now announcing upcoming parties and parades for it.

Aside from its non-biblical origins, what else is wrong with it?

Its focus is non-appropriate.  Notice a couple of headlines from several hours ago:

Main Street Bars Prepare St. Patrick’s Day Festivities

St. Patrick’s Day events planned: Leprechaun Olympics, pub crawl

The Guardian
Irish people will feel compelled to drink alcohol to celebrate St Patrick’s Day this Sunday whether they want to or not; even those who declare themselves as teetotal for the rest of the year.

Apparently it is a day that driving becomes more dangerous as various news sources reported last year:

Friends don’t let friends drive drunk this Saint Patrick’s Day: Westfield Police to increase DWI enforcement

Suburban News – 8 March 2012

Like most holidays, Saint Patrick’s Day has become a popular time for people to celebrate with family and friends. However, due to the large numbers of drunk drivers, the day has also become a very dangerous one.

On Saint Patrick’s Day 2009, 37% of the drivers and motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher, according to statistics obtained from the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Additional NHTSA statistics also disclosed that in 2009 there were 103 crash fatalities on Saint Patrick’s Day. Of that number, 47 people were killed in crashes that involved at least one driver or motorcyclist with a BAC of .08% or higher.

In response to these alarming statistics, the Westfield Police Department has announced that it will be increasing its Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) enforcement efforts on Saint Patrick’s Day, Saturday, March 17.

Wake County Criminal Defense Attorney Says St. Patrick’s Day

PR Web (press release) – 8 March 2012

The Raleigh DWI defense lawyer said that law enforcement drunk driving crackdowns give drivers an added incentive to drive safely on St. Patrick’s Day…Coolidge pointed to last year’s St. Patrick’s Day “Booze It & Lose It” campaign. The Governor’s Highway Safety Program reported that state and local law enforcement officers conducted 2,618 sobriety checkpoints and dedicated patrols during a period from March 11-17.

The campaign netted a total of 32,579 traffic and criminal citations statewide. The total included 1,013 DWI charges. Out of that number, 123 charges involved drivers under age 21. Wake County had 94 DWI citations, the second highest number in the state.

DUI crackdown need not wait for holidays
SnoValley Star_ March 7, 2012

Officers in King County on routine and extra patrols arrested 310 people for DUI during the St. Patrick’s Day enforcement effort last year.

St. Patrick’s Day could be unlucky for impaired motorists. But getting drunk drivers off the road would be lucky for everyone else.

So, is this more dangerous driving day a day for real Christians to celebrate?

Notice what the Apostle Peter wrote:

1 Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 3 For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles — when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. (1 Peter 4:1-3)

Is not “St. Patrick’s Day” a time from revelry, drinking parties, and drunkenness? Is not that something that the Apostle Peter said real Christians would no longer participate in?

According to the Apostle Paul, such people will not be in the Kingdom of God:

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21)

Despite what the Bible teaches, the Protestant publication “Christianity Today” seems to think it is acceptable to celebrate as one article at its website states:

Patrick the Saint
Behind the fanciful legends of the fifth-century British missionary stands a man worthy of embellishment (Cagney, Mary. Patrick the Saint).

Each year millions of people observe St. Patrick’s Day, but those in the real Churches of God (COGs), like the Continuing Church of God, do not. We observe the Holy Days that God enjoined in the Bible and urge others to do so as well.

Some articles of possibly related interest may include:

Why The Continuing Church of God Does Not Wear Green on St. Patrick’s Day Should non-Catholics observe a Catholic holiday?
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differ from most Protestants How the Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background.
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions.
Is There “An Annual Worship Calendar” In the Bible? This paper provides a biblical and historical critique of several articles, including one by the Tkach WCG which states that this should be a local decision. What do the Holy Days mean? Also you can click here for the calendar of Holy Days.
Hebrew Calendar and “Postponements” This John Ogywn writing explains why we in the Church of God use the calendar that we do and answers such questions as “Did Jesus Observe the Postponements?”
Keeping Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread How should Christians keep Passover, especially if they are by themselves. Why does the Church of God not require lambs for Passover? How does one keep the Days of Unleavened Bread?
Preparing for Passover The Apostle Paul taught that Christians should examine themselves prior to taking Passover. This YouTube video sermon gives suggestions on how to prepare.
Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach? Why did Jesus die for our sins? There is also a detailed YouTube video available titled History of the Christian Passover.
Melito’s Homily on the Passover This is one of the earliest Christian writings about the Passover. This also includes what Apollinaris wrote on the Passover as well.
TPM: Passover on the 14th or 15th? While the CCOG observes Passover on the 14th, some observe it on the 15th. Why is the 14th correct?
The Night to Be Observed What is the night to be much observed? When is it? Why do Jews keep Passover twice and emphasize the wrong date? Here is a link to a YouTube video titled The Night to Be Observed.
Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread? Do they have any use or meaning now? What is leaven? This article supplies some biblical answers.

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