What an exciting and extraordinary week we have had here in Ireland. We are a small island off the coast of Europe with approximately five million people. Yet there are about sixty million diaspora throughout the world. On St Patrick’s day throughout the world everyone who has Irish roots celebrates. It is the second most celebrated day in the world after Christmas Day.
Here is a photograph of Ireland taken from the International Space Station by astronaut Terry Virts and tweeted on St Patrick’s Day. Thank you. It is wonderful to see our island from high above the Earth without clouds. The sun was shining on us.
On St Patrick’s day there was celebrations and parades in Dublin and Downpatrick. Other nations acknowledged Ireland by lighting up certain monuments in green. Five years ago, the Sydney Opera House was the first global location to go green.
But this year, From the London Eye and Edinburgh Castle to the Leaning Tower of Pisa, global landmarks went green on St Patrick’s night. More than 150 iconic landmarks in mainland Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand, as well as China, South Korea, India, Brazil and South Africa were floodlit with green light in honour of St Patrick’s day.
The Minister for Tourism for Sourthern Ireland, Paschal Donohoe, said: “The fact that 160 buildings have opted to go green to celebrate St Patrick’s Day this year brings an enormous sense of pride to our people at home and across the world.
“Being able to put ourselves front and centre on the world stage in this way reaps unrivalled dividends in terms of publicity, promoting Ireland and getting the message out about our recovery and the progress we are making.”
To crown a wonderful day of lights there was a display of the Aurore Borealis, vibrant shades of purple and green illuminating the skies over Ireland. Normally areas closer to the North Pole see this phenomenon. This display of lights was not man made. I believe God added his display of glory to end the day. Behold the Glory of God covers the earth as the waters cover the sea. Photo taken by photographer over Slemish.
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. (Psalm 19:1 NIV)
God is described as the Father of Lights.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights. (James 1:17 NIV)
On Friday morning I was working in the kitchen. I noticed it was getting very dark outside. I looked out and saw a dark cloud overhead coming from the east. I thought to myself , “It must be going to rain”. Dark clouds are not unusual in Northern Ireland. During the thirty years of troubles every day seemed to be dark and grey. I later found out that morning there was an eclipse of the sun where the moon covered over part of the sun. Here is a picture showing the moon partially covering the sun. This event seldom happens. Photograph taken by photographer in Donaghadee, Co Down.
Jesus said “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. (Luke 21:25 NIV)
On Saturday many Irish people were glued to their TVs waiting for the outcome of the Six Nations Rugby Competion. Eventually Ireland knew they were the winners after England failed to get enough points. More joyous celebrations. On Sunday the Irish Women’s Rugby team became champions as well. A great end to special blessed week for the Irish.
photos shared from Images of the Solar Eclipse.