Today the world woke up greener than usual, thanks to all the Irish (by blood or by heart - the great majority by heart) who is scattered to the four corners of this planet.
Saint Patrick's Day became an official religious feast day in Ireland during the 17th century. Four Christian denominations observe the holiday: Anglican, Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Lutheran. The celebration, besides its religious significance, it has also become a secular celebration of Irish customs. Maybe it's one of the reasons that made this celebration so disseminated around the globe, it's not just a religious event, there's also a patriotic sentiment.
In 1903, Saint Patrick's Day became an official public Irish holiday and in the 1990's, the government began a campaign to highlight the country and its culture. It seems that the idea has caught on quickly! Even here in Brazil, more and more places like pubs and bars (check the poster on the right) have promoted their St. Patrick's Day, with lots of "green things" from t-shirts and hats to bottons and stickers, serving tipycal Irish food and drink, such as the famous Irish stew and the well-known Guinness or the green draft-beer and all that with the sound of Irish folk music. We almost could say that ireland is here!
And of course, we can't forget the clothes! "Wearing of the Green" has become a kind of passport and guarantee that you will be included in this charming celebration as genuine hot tempered Irish person, embraced by this warm hearted tribe of leprechauns, no matter what your ancestry is.
But why has it become so popular? I really can't say for sure, but I guess that the combination of good food, nice beer, joyful music and get together with other people has contributed a lot for its success. It's part of human beings to celebrate and have fun! Some do it in the pubs, others go to the street to participate and attend the parades and others just celebrate it at home, helping children to study for the test. Maybe it's not so nice like the other options, but at least we are wearing green...and counting on the good luck of Irish to help us tomorrow...we never know when it will be necessary! (To get a good mark in a test souds like a good moment to use it!).
Post Question for the students: What do you know about Irish culture? Do you like the Irish singers and bands? Have you ever celebrated St. Patrick's Day? Would you like to participate in this celebration? If you could find a leprechaun, what would you like to ask him/her?
Tip: To watch some curious videos with intereting information about St. Patrick's Day celebration around the world, go to the BBCNews site and have fun! Just click here. (in the end of the first video, more three others will be available).