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Happy St. David’s Day!

1st March 2016

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“Be joyful, and keep your faith and your creed. Do the little things that you have seen me do and heard about. I will walk the path that our fathers have trod before us.”

St David’s Day is trending on social media today- but how many of us really know what the day is all about? I thought I’d find out the key info and report back…

— St David is the patron saint of Wales

— He is also the patron saint of doves

— Born in Caerfai in Pembrokshire

— St David’s Day is always on the 1st March as it is believed he died on this day in 601- it became a national holiday during the 18th century

— He was recognised as a national patron saint during the height of the Welsh resistance to the Normans

— He was made an Arch Bishop when he visited Jerusalem, during his life he also went on pilgrimages to, Wales, Cornwall, Brittany and Ireland

— He helped find 12 monasteries and his aim was to spread the word of Christianity, he apparently also helped suppress Pelegrian heresy (where people believed that one is capable of choosing between good and evil without divine aid)

— The monasteries he helped find were known to be very strict, they abstained from all worldly pleasures and ate plain foods such as bread and vegetables

— Since little record remains of his life, we know very little about the saint, however we do know he was famous for performing miracles, his most famous one was when he was surrounded by a crowd, who could not see him nor hear his preachings, and so he raised the land around him to form a hill he could be seen from

— King Arthur was rumoured to be his uncle

— The day isn’t a national holiday in Wales, this was rejected by Tony Blair despite 80% of Welsh people thinking it should be a bank holiday as St Patricks day is in Ireland

— The Dove I mentioned earlier is associated with him in many images you may see on him, this represents the Holy Spirit which is said to have spoken to him when he preached- this dove first came to him when he created the hill I mentioned above- since then the dove is heavily associated to him

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This is the flag of St David- if you’re in Wales today you will see this being flown much more than usual

— As well as flying the flag, many people wear a Daffodil- the national symbol of Wales. Since the 18th century, people eat Taffies which are gingerbread in the shape of a welshman riding a goat

— According to the VisitWales website, “Almost 900 years after he was pronounced a saint, St David’s Day is the unmissable highlight of spring in Wales. The National St David’s Day Parade sends a red and yellow carnival across the centre of Cardiff, featuring all sorts of fiery performances from giant dragons and theatrical groups, not to mention star turns from the likes of Tom Jones and Shirley Bassey. A rousing mass rendition of the national anthem, Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau, finishes the procession outside St David’s Hall, where you can enjoy a special gala concert from the BBC National Orchestra of Wales in the evening.”

StDavidsCathedral

St David’s Cathedral, Pembrokeshire- people made pilgrimages to here after hearing of the miracles the Saint performed.

There will be celebrations all over Wales today- are you attending any?

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