A Trip to Downpatrick

Well hello readers!

Welcome back to the Northern Ireland blog. 

Today we traveled to Downpatrick to learn about St. Patrick. To start our journey through St. Patrick’s life we met our tour guide, Tim. He is a guru on everything to do with St. Patrick. Tim took us through the exhibit at the St. Patrick Centre which walked us through the interesting and historic life of Patrick. What many people do not know about Patrick is that he is not originally from Ireland. At the age of sixteen he was kidnapped taken to Ireland to be a slave. Eventually Patrick was able to hitch a ride on a ship back to Britain where he was originally from. Years later Patrick responded to God calling him back to Ireland which led to the conversion of a barbaric nation over to Christianity. 

After our tour we were led to the Downpatrick Cathedral, where three saints, one of which being St. Patrick, are buried. Not everyone is able to say that they have been to the burial place of the Patron Saint of Ireland.  With that said, this experience was very enriching. 

After a delicious lunch break, we set off for, Saul, the very first church of Ireland. This medieval stone church was very small, however I personally have never felt such a heavy presence of the Holy Spirit in one place. The instant I walked in, the Holy Spirit placed the song “10,000 Reasons” on my heart and mind. Once Tim was finished speaking to us about this amazing church, I asked my classmates to stand up and start singing this song with me and it made the experience so much more meaningful for all of us. 

The Holy Spirit has a way of finding little ways to make seemingly ordinary experiencesextraordinary. Before visiting Saul, we had visited three separate churches and needless to say we were less than eager to visit another.  Nevertheless, the Holy Spirit had more in store for us this afternoon. Worshiping our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in the very first church established in Ireland was an amazing experience and I am so thankful that the God gave us that opportunity.

Once we left Saul, we ventured to an old prison which has been converted into a museum. We were given a tour of the facilities which included an original door to the prison. The place was stocked full with historical artifacts that were very intriguing. After a very enriching and tiring day, this was our last stop.

Thus ending our 6th day in Northern Ireland.

-Jack Conklin

Marcus HarrisComment