The Confession of Saint Patrick
Translated from the Latin by Ludwig Bieler
I am Patrick, a sinner, most unlearned, the least of all the faithful, and
utterly despised by many. My father was Calpornius, a deacon, son of Potitus,
a priest, of the village Bannavem Taburniæ; he had a country seat nearby, and
there I was taken captive.
I was then about sixteen years of age. I did not know the true God. I was taken
into captivity to Ireland with many thousands of people---and deservedly so,
because we turned away from God, and did not keep His commandments, and did
not obey our priests, who used to remind us of our salvation. And the Lord brought
over us the wrath of his anger and scattered us among many nations, even unto
the utmost part of the earth, where now my littleness is placed among strangers.
And there the Lord opened the sense of my unbelief that I might at last remember
my sins and be converted with all my heart to the Lord my God, who had regard
for my abjection, and mercy on my youth and ignorance, and watched over me before
I knew Him, and before I was able to distinguish between good and evil, and
guarded me, and comforted me as would a father his son.
Hence I cannot be silent---nor, indeed, is it expedient---about the great benefits
and the great grace which the lord has deigned to bestow upon me in the land
of my captivity; for this we can give to God in return after having been chastened
by Him, to exalt and praise His wonders before every nation that is anywhere
under the heaven.
Because there is no other God, nor ever was, nor will be, than God the Father
unbegotten, without beginning, from whom is all beginning, the Lord of the universe,
as we have been taught; and His son Jesus Christ, whom we declare to have always
been with the Father, spiritually and ineffably begotten by the Father before
the beginning of the world, before all beginning; and by Him are made all things
visible and invisible. He was made man, and, having defeated death, was received
into heaven by the Father; and He hath given Him all power over all names in
heaven, on earth, and under the earth, and every tongue shall confess to Him
that Jesus Christ is Lord and God, in whom we believe, and whose advent we expect
soon to be, judge of the living and of the dead, who will render to every man
according to his deeds; and He has poured forth upon us abundantly the Holy
Spirit, the gift and pledge of immortality, who makes those who believe and
obey sons of God and joint heirs with Christ; and Him do we confess and adore,
one God in the Trinity of the Holy Name.
For He Himself has said through the Prophet: Call upon me in the day of thy
trouble, and I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me. And again He says:
It is honourable to reveal and confess the works of God.
Although I am imperfect in many things, I nevertheless wish that my brethren
and kinsmen should know what sort of person I am, so that they may understand
my heart's desire.
I know well the testimony of my Lord, who in the Psalm declares: Thou wilt
destroy them that speak a lie. And again He says: The mouth that belieth killeth
the soul. And the same Lord says in the Gospel: Every idle word that men shall
speak, they shall render an account for it on the day of judgement.
And so I should dread exceedingly, with fear and trembling, this sentence on
that day when no one will be able to escape or hide, but we all, without exception,
shall have to give an account even of our smallest sins before the judgement
of the Lord Christ.
For this reason I had in mind to write, but hesitated until now; I was afraid
of exposing myself to the talk of men, because I have not studied like the others,
who thoroughly imbibed law and Sacred Scripture, and never had to change from
the language of their childhood days, but were able to make it still more perfect.
In our case, what I had to say had to be translated into a tongue foreign to
me, as can be easily proved from the savour of my writing, which betrays how
little instruction and training I have had in the art of words; for, so says
Scripture, by the tongue will be discovered the wise man, and understanding,
and knowledge, and the teaching of truth.
But of what help is an excuse, however true, especially if combined with presumption,
since now, in my old age, I strive for something that I did not acquire in youth?
It was my sins that prevented me from fixing in my mind what before I had barely
read through. But who believes me, though I should repeat what I started out
As a youth, nay, almost as a boy not able to speak, I was taken captive, before
I knew what to pursue and what to avoid. Hence to-day I blush and fear exceedingly
to reveal my lack of education; for I am unable to tell my story to those versed
in the art of concise writing---in such a way, I mean, as my spirit and mind
long to do, and so that the sense of my words expresses what I feel.
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But if indeed it had been given to me as it was given to others, then I would
not be silent because of my desire of thanksgiving; and if perhaps some people
think me arrogant for doing so in spite of my lack of knowledge and my slow
tongue, it is, after all, written: The stammering tongues shall quickly learn
to speak peace.
How much more should we earnestly strive to do this, we, who are, so Scripture
says, a letter of Christ for salvation unto the utmost part of the earth, and,
though not an eloquent one, yet...written in your hearts, not with ink, but
with the spirit of the living God! And again the Spirit witnesses that even
rusticity was created by the Highest.
Whence I, once rustic, exiled, unlearned, who does not know how to provide
for the future, this at least I know most certainly that before I was humiliated
I was like a stone Lying in the deep mire; and He that is mighty came and in
His mercy lifted me up, and raised me aloft, and placed me on the top of the
wall. And therefore I ought to cry out aloud and so also render something to
the Lord for His great benefits here and in eternity---benefits which the mind
of men is unable to appraise.
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Wherefore, then, be astonished, ye great and little that fear God, and you
men of letters on your estates, listen and pore over this. Who was it that roused
up me, the fool that I am, from the midst of those who in the eyes of men are
wise, and expert in law, and powerful in word and in everything? And He inspired
me---me, the outcast of this world---before others, to be the man (if only I
could!) who, with fear and reverence and without blame, should faithfully serve
the people to whom the love of Christ conveyed and gave me for the duration
of my life, if I should be worthy; yes indeed, to serve them humbly and sincerely.
In the light, therefore, of our faith in the Trinity I must make this choice,
regardless of danger I must make known the gift of God and everlasting consolation,
without fear and frankly I must spread everywhere the name of God so that after
my decease I may leave a bequest to my brethren and sons whom I have baptised
in the Lord---so many thousands of people.
And I was not worthy, nor was I such that the Lord should grant this to His
servant; that after my misfortunes and so great difficulties, after my captivity,
after the lapse of so many years, He should give me so great a grace in behalf
of that nation---a thing which once, in my youth, I never expected nor thought
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But after I came to Ireland---every day I had to tend sheep, and many times
a day I prayed---the love of God and His fear came to me more and more, and
my faith was strengthened. And my spirit was moved so that in a single day I
would say as many as a hundred prayers, and almost as many in the night, and
this even when I was staying in the woods and on the mountains; and I used to
get up for prayer before daylight, through snow, through frost, through rain,
and I felt no harm, and there was no sloth in me---as I now see, because the
spirit within me was then fervent.
And there one night I heard in my sleep a voice saying to me: `It is well that
you fast, soon you will go to your own country.' And again, after a short while,
I heard a voice saying to me: `See, your ship is ready.' And it was not near,
but at a distance of perhaps two hundred miles, and I had never been there,
nor did I know a living soul there; and then I took to flight, and I left the
man with whom I had stayed for six years. And I went in the strength of God
who directed my way to my good, and I feared nothing until I came to that ship.
And the day that I arrived the ship was set afloat, and I said that I was able
to pay for my passage with them. But the captain was not pleased, and with indignation
he answered harshly: `It is of no use for you to ask us to go along with us.'
And when I heard this, I left them in order to return to the hut where I was
staying. And as I went, I began to pray; and before I had ended my prayer, I
heard one of them shouting behind me, `Come, hurry, we shall take you on in
good faith; make friends with us in whatever way you like.' And so on that day
I refused to suck their breasts for fear of God, but rather hoped they would
come to the faith of Jesus Christ, because they were pagans. And thus I had
my way with them, and we set sail at once.
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And after three days we reached land, and for twenty-eight days we travelled
through deserted country. And they lacked food, and hunger overcame them; and
the next day the captain said to me: `Tell me, Christian: you say that your
God is great and all-powerful; why, then, do you not pray for us? As you can
see, we are suffering from hunger; it is unlikely indeed that we shall ever
see a human being again.'
I said to them full of confidence: `Be truly converted with all your heart
to the Lord my God, because nothing is impossible for Him, that this day He
may send you food on your way until you be satisfied; for He has abundance everywhere.'
And, with the help of God, so it came to pass: suddenly a herd of pigs appeared
on the road before our eyes, and they killed many of them; and there they stopped
for two nights and fully recovered their strength, and their hounds received
their fill for many of them had grown weak and were half-dead along the way.
And from that day they had plenty of food. They also found wild honey, and offered
some of it to me, and one of them said: `This we offer in sacrifice.' Thanks
be to God, I tasted none of it.
That same night, when I was asleep, Satan assailed me violently, a thing I
shall remember as long as I shall be in this body. And he fell upon me like
a huge rock, and I could not stir a limb. But whence came it into my mind, ignorant
as I am, to call upon Helias? And meanwhile I saw the sun rise in the sky, and
while I was shouting `Helias! Helias' with all my might, suddenly the splendour
of that sun fell on me and immediately freed me of all misery. And I believe
that I was sustained by Christ my Lord, and that His Spirit was even then crying
out in my behalf, and I hope it will be so on the day of my tribulation, as
is written in the Gospel: On that day, the Lord declares, it is not you that
speak, but the Spirit of your Father that speaketh in you.
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And once again, after many years, I fell into captivity. On that first night
I stayed with them, I heard a divine message saying to me: `Two months will
you be with them.' And so it came to pass: on the sixtieth night thereafter
the Lord delivered me out of their hands.
Also on our way God gave us food and fire and dry weather every day, until,
on the tenth day, we met people. As I said above, we travelled twenty-eight
days through deserted country, and the night that we met people we had no food
And again after a few years I was in Britain with my people. who received me
as their son, and sincerely besought me that now at last, having suffered so
many hardships, I should not leave them and go elsewhere.
And there I saw in the night the vision of a man, whose name was Victoricus,
coming as it were from Ireland, with countless letters. And he gave me one of
them, and I read the opening words of the letter, which were, `The voice of
the Irish'; and as I read the beginning of the letter I thought that at the
same moment I heard their voice---they were those beside the Wood of Voclut,
which is near the Western Sea---and thus did they cry out as with one mouth:
`We ask thee, boy, come and walk among us once more.'
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And I was quite broken in heart, and could read no further, and so I woke up.
Thanks be to God, after many years the Lord gave to them according to their
And another night---whether within me, or beside me, I know not, God knoweth---they
called me most unmistakably with words which I heard but could not understand,
except that at the end of the prayer He spoke thus: `He that has laid down His
life for thee, it is He that speaketh in thee'; and so I awoke full of joy.
And again I saw Him praying in me, and I was as it were within my body, and
I heard Him above me, that is, over the inward man, and there He prayed mightily
with groanings. And all the time I was astonished, and wondered, and thought
with myself who it could be that prayed in me. But at the end of the prayer
He spoke, saying that He was the Spirit; and so I woke up, and remembered the
Apostle saying: The Spirit helpeth the infirmities of our prayer. For we know
not what we should pray for as we ought; but the Spirit Himself asketh for us
with unspeakable groanings, which cannot be expressed in words; and again: The
Lord our advocate asketh for us.
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And when I was attacked by a number of my seniors who came forth and brought
up my sins against my laborious episcopate, on that day indeed was I struck
so that I might have fallen now and for eternity; but the Lord graciously spared
the stranger and sojourner for His name and came mightily to my help in this
affliction Verily, not slight was the shame and blame that fell upon me! I ask
God that it may not be reckoned to them as sin.
As cause for proceeding against me they found---after thirty years!---a confession
I had made before I was a deacon. In the anxiety of my troubled mind I confided
to my dearest friend what I had done in my boyhood one day, nay, in one hour,
because I was not yet strong. I know not, God knoweth---whether I was then fifteen
years old: and I did not believe in the living God, nor did I so from my childhood,
but lived in death and unbelief until I was severely chastised and really humiliated,
by hunger and nakedness, and that daily.
On the other hand, I did not go to Ireland of my own accord. not until I had
nearly perished; but this was rather for my good, for thus was I purged by the
Lord; and He made me fit so that I might be now what was once far from me that
I should care and labour for the salvation of others, whereas then I did not
even care about myself.
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On that day, then, when I was rejected by those referred to and mentioned above,
in that night I saw a vision of the night. There was a writing without honour
against my face, and at the same time I heard God's voice saying to me: `We
have seen with displeasure the face of Deisignatus' (thus revealing his name).
He did not say, `Thou hast seen.' but `We have seen.' as if He included Himself,
as He sayeth: He who toucheth you toucheth as it were the apple of my eye.
Therefore I give Him thanks who hath strengthened me in everything, as He did
not frustrate the journey upon which I had decided, and the work which I had
learned from Christ my Lord; but I rather felt after this no little strength,
and my trust was proved right before God and men.
And so I say boldly, my conscience does not blame me now or in the future:
God is my witness that I have not lied in the account which I have given you.
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But the more am I sorry for my dearest friend that we had to hear what he said.
To him I had confided my very soul! And I was told by some of the brethren before
that defence---at which I was not present, nor was I in Britain, nor was it
suggested by me---that he would stand up for me in my absence. He had even said
to me in person: `Look, you should be raised to the rank of bishop!'---of which
I was not worthy. But whence did it come to him afterwards that he let me down
before all, good and evil, and publicly, in a matter in which he had favoured
me before spontaneously and gladly---and not he alone, but the Lord, who is
greater than all?
Enough of this. I must not, however, hide God's gift which He bestowed upon
me in the land of my captivity; because then I earnestly sought Him, and there
I found Him, and He saved me from all evil because---so I believe---of His Spirit
that dwelleth in me. Again, boldly said. But God knows it, had this been said
to me by a man, I had perhaps remained silent for the love of Christ.
Hence, then, I give unwearied thanks to God, who kept me faithful in the day
of my temptation, so that today I can confidently offer Him my soul as a living
sacrifice---to Christ my Lord, who saved me out of all my troubles. Thus I can
say: `Who am I, 0 Lord, and to what hast Thou called me, Thou who didst assist
me with such divine power that to-day I constantly exalt and magnify Thy name
among the heathens wherever I may be, and not only in good days but also in
tribulations?' So indeed I must accept with equanimity whatever befalls me,
be it good or evil, and always give thanks to God, who taught me to trust in
Him always without hesitation, and who must have heard my prayer so that I,
however ignorant I was, in the last days dared to undertake such a holy and
wonderful work---thus imitating somehow those who, as the Lord once foretold,
would preach His Gospel for a testimony to all nations before the end of the
world. So we have seen it, and so it has been fulfilled: indeed, we are witnesses
that the Gospel has been preached unto those parts beyond which there lives
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Now, it would be tedious to give a detailed account of all my labours or even
a part of them. Let me tell you briefly how the merciful God often freed me
from slavery and from twelve dangers in which my life was at stake---not to
mention numerous plots, which I cannot express in words; for I do not want to
bore my readers. But God is my witness, who knows all things even before they
come to pass, as He used to forewarn even me, poor wretch that I am, of many
things by a divine message.
How came I by this wisdom, which was not in me, who neither knew the number
of my days nor knew what God was? Whence was given to me afterwards the gift
so great, so salutary---to know God and to love Him, although at the price of
leaving my country and my parents?
And many gifts were offered to me in sorrow and tears, and I offended the donors,
much against the wishes of some of my seniors; but, guided by God, in no way
did I agree with them or acquiesce. It was not grace of my own, but God, who
is strong in me and resists them all---as He had done when I came to the people
of Ireland to preach the Gospel, and to suffer insult from the unbelievers,
hearing the reproach of my going abroad, and many persecutions even unto bonds,
and to give my free birth for the benefit of others; and, should I be worthy,
I am prepared to give even my life without hesitation and most gladly for His
name, and it is there that I wish to spend it until I die, if the Lord would
grant it to me.
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For I am very much God's debtor, who gave me such grace that many people were
reborn in God through me and afterwards confirmed, and that clerics were ordained
for them everywhere, for a people just coming to the faith, whom the Lord took
from the utmost parts of the earth, as He once had promised through His prophets:
To Thee the gentiles shall come from the ends of the earth and shall say: `How
false are the idols that our fathers got for themselves, and there is no profit
in them'; and again: `I have set Thee as a light among the gentiles, that Thou
mayest be for salvation unto the utmost part of the earth.'
And there I wish to wait for His promise who surely never deceives, as He promises
in the Gospel: They shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down
with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob---as we believe the faithful will come from
all the world.
For that reason, therefore, we ought to fish well and diligently, as the Lord
exhorts in advance and teaches, saying: Come ye after me, and I will make you
to be fishers of men. And again He says through the prophets: Behold, I send
many fishers and hunters, saith God, and so on. Hence it was most necessary
to spread our nets so that a great multitude and throng might be caught for
God, and that there be clerics everywhere to baptize and exhort a people in
need and want, as the Lord in the Gospel states, exhorts and teaches, saying:
Going therefore now, teach ye all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things
whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days even to the
consummation of the world. And again He says: Go ye therefore into the whole
world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized
shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be condemned. And again: This
Gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a testimony to
all nations, and then shall come the end. And so too the Lord announces through
the prophet, and says: And it shall come to pass, in the last days, saith the
Lord, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters
shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall
dream dreams. And upon my servants indeed, and upon my handmaids will I pour
out in those days of my Spirit, and they shall prophesy. And in Osee,
He saith: `I will call that which was not my people, my people; ...and her that
had not obtained mercy, one that hath obtained mercy. And it shall be in the
place where it was said: ``You are not my people,'' there they shall be called
the sons of the living God.'
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Hence, how did it come to pass in Ireland that those who never had a knowledge
of God, but until now always worshipped idols and things impure, have now been
made a people of the Lord, and are called sons of God, that the sons and daughters
of the kings of the Irish are seen to be monks and virgins of Christ?
Among others, a blessed Irishwoman of noble birth, beautiful, full-grown, whom
I had baptized, came to us after some days for a particular reason: she told
us that she had received a message from a messenger of God, and he admonished
her to be a virgin of Christ and draw near to God. Thanks be to God, on the
sixth day after this she most laudably and eagerly chose what all virgins of
Christ do. Not that their fathers agree with them: no---they often ever suffer
persecution and undeserved reproaches from their parents; and yet their number
is ever increasing. How many have been reborn there so as to be of our kind,
I do not know---not to mention widows and those who practice continence.
But greatest is the suffering of those women who live in slavery. All the time
they have to endure terror and threats. But the Lord gave His grace to many
of His maidens; for, though they are forbidden to do so, they follow Him bravely.
Wherefore, then, even if I wished to leave them and go to Britain---and how
I would have loved to go to my country and my parents, and also to Gaul in order
to visit the brethren and to see the face of the saints of my Lord! God knows
it! that I much desired it; but I am bound by the Spirit, who gives evidence
against me if I do this, telling me that I shall be guilty; and I am afraid
of losing the labour which I have begun---nay, not I, but Christ the Lord who
bade me come here and stay with them for the rest of my life, if the Lord will,
and will guard me from every evil way that I may not sin before Him.
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This, I presume, I ought to do, but I do not trust myself as long as I am in
this body of death, for strong is he who daily strives to turn me away from
the faith and the purity of true religion to which I have devoted myself to
the end of my I life to Christ my Lord. But the hostile flesh is ever dragging
us unto death, that I is, towards the forbidden satisfaction of one's desires;
and I know that in part I did not lead a perfect life as did the other faithful;
but I acknowledge it to my! Lord, and do not blush before Him, because I lie
not: from the time I came to know Him in my youth, the love of God and the fear
of Him have grown in me, and up to now, thanks to the grace of God, I have kept
And let those who will, laugh and scorn---I shall not be silent; nor shall
I hide the signs and wonders which the Lord has shown me many years before they
came to pass, as He knows everything even before the times of the world.
Hence I ought unceasingly to give thanks to God who often pardoned my folly
and my carelessness, and on more than one occasion spared His great wrath on
me, who was chosen to be His helper and who was slow to do as was shown me and
as the Spirit suggested. And the Lord had mercy on me thousands and thousands
of times because He saw that I was ready, but that I did not know what to do
in the circumstances. For many tried to prevent this my mission; they would
even talk to each other behind my back and say: `Why does this fellow throw
himself into danger among enemies who have no knowledge of God?' It was not
malice, but it did not appeal to them because---and to this I own myself---of
my rusticity. And I did not realize at once the grace that was then in me; now
I understand that I should have done so before.
Now I have given a simple account to my brethren and fellow servants who have
believed me because of what I said and still say in order to strengthen and
confirm your faith. Would that you, too, would strive for greater things and
do better! This will be my glory, for a wise son is the glory of his father.
You know, and so does God, how I have lived among you from my youth in the
true faith and in sincerity of heart. Likewise, as regards the heathen among
whom I live, I have been faithful to them, and so I shall be. God knows it,
I have overreached none of them, nor would I think of doing so, for the sake
of God and His Church, for fear of raising persecution against them and all
of us, and for fear that through me the name of the Lord be blasphemed; for
it is written: Woe to the man through whom the name of the Lord is blasphemed.
For although I be rude in all things, nevertheless I have tried somehow to
keep myself safe, and that, too, for my Christian brethren, and the virgins
of Christ, and the pious women who of their own accord made me gifts and laid
on the altar some of their ornaments and I gave them back to them, and they
were offended that I did so. But I did it for the hope of lasting success---in
order to preserve myself cautiously in everything so that they might not seize
upon me or the ministry of my service, under the pretext of dishonesty, and
that I would not even in the smallest matter give the infidels an opportunity
to defame or defile.
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When I baptized so many thousands of people, did I perhaps expect from any
of them as much as half a scruple? Tell me, and I will restore it to you. Or
when the Lord ordained clerics everywhere through my unworthy person and I conferred
the ministry upon them free, if I asked any of them as much as the price of
my shoes, speak against me and I will return it to you.
On the contrary, I spent money for you that they might receive me; and I went
to you and everywhere for your sake in many dangers, even to the farthest districts,
beyond which there lived nobody and where nobody had ever come to baptize, or
to ordain clergy, or to confirm the people. With the grace of the Lord, I did
everything lovingly and gladly for your salvation.
All the while I used to give presents to the kings, besides the fees I paid
to their sons who travel with me. Even so they laid hands on me and my companions,
and on that day they eagerly wished to kill me; but my time had not yet come.
And everything they found with us they took away, and me they put in irons;
and on the fourteenth day the Lord delivered me from their power, and our belongings
were returned to us because of God and our dear friends whom we had seen before.
You know how much I paid to those who administered justice in all those districts
to which I came frequently. I think I distributed among them not less than the
price of fifteen men, so that you might enjoy me, and I might always enjoy you
in God. I am not sorry for it---indeed it is not enough for me; I still spend
and shall spend more. God has power to grant me afterwards that I myself may
be spent for your souls.
Indeed, I call God to witness upon my soul that I lie not; neither, I hope,
am I writing to you in order to make this an occasion of flattery or covetousness,
nor because I look for honour from any of you. Sufficient is the honour that
is not yet seen but is anticipated in the heart. Faithful is He that promised;
He never lieth.
But I see myself exalted even in the present world beyond measure by the Lord,
and I was not worthy nor such that He should grant me this. I know perfectly
well, though not by my own judgement, that poverty and misfortune becomes me
better than riches and pleasures. For Christ the Lord, too, was poor for our
sakes; and I, unhappy wretch that I am, have no wealth even if I wished for
it. Daily I expect murder, fraud, or captivity, or whatever it may be; but I
fear none of these things because of the promises of heaven. I have cast myself
into the hands of God Almighty, who rules everywhere, as the prophet says: Cast
thy thought upon God, and He shall sustain thee.
So, now I commend my soul to my faithful God, for whom I am an ambassador in
all my wretchedness; but God accepteth no person, and chose me for this office---to
be, although among His least, one of His ministers.
Hence let me render unto Him for all He has done to me. But what can I say
or what can I promise to my Lord, as I can do nothing that He has not given
me? May He search the hearts and deepest feelings; for greatly and exceedingly
do I wish, and ready I was, that He should give me His chalice to drink, as
He gave it also to the others who loved Him.
Wherefore may God never permit it to happen to me that I should lose His people
which He purchased in the utmost parts of the world. I pray to God to give me
perseverance and to deign that I be a faithful witness to Him to the end of
my life for my God.
And if ever I have done any good for my God whom I love, I beg Him to grant
me that I may shed my blood with those exiles and captives for His name, even
though I should be denied a grave, or my body be woefully torn to pieces limb
by limb by hounds or wild beasts, or the fowls of the air devour it. I am firmly
convinced that if this should happen to me, I would have gained my soul together
with my body, because on that day without doubt we shall rise in the brightness
of the sun, that is, in the glory of Christ Jesus our Redeemer, as sons of the
living God and joint heirs with Christ, to be made conformable to His image;
for of Him, and by Him, and in Him we shall reign.
For this sun which we see rises daily for us because He commands so, but it
will never reign, nor will its splendour last; what is more, those wretches
who adore it will be miserably punished. Not so we, who believe in, and worship,
the true sun---Christ---who will never perish, nor will he who doeth His will;
but he will abide for ever as Christ abideth for ever, who reigns with God the
Father Almighty and the Holy Spirit before time, and now, and in all eternity.
Behold, again and again would I set forth the words of my confession. I testify
in truth and in joy of heart before God and His holy angels that I never had
any reason except the Gospel and its promises why I should ever return to the
people from whom once before I barely escaped.
I pray those who believe and fear God, whosoever deigns to look at or receive
this writing which Patrick, a sinner, unlearned, has composed in Ireland, that
no one should ever say that it was my ignorance if I did or showed forth anything
however small according to God's good pleasure; but let this be your conclusion
and let it so be thought, that---as is the perfect truth---it was the gift of
God. This is my confession before I die.
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