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St Patrick

12 13 the IrIsh mIssIon a message from Voclut After his escape Patrick became a priest in Britain, but wanted to go back to Ireland. A few years later, he relates, I was with my parents again, who pressed him not to go, as did Church colleagues, but he dreamt of a man coming as from Ireland called Victoricius with countless letters I heard voices of those near Voclut wood by the western sea who exclaimed with one voice we ask you, holy boy, to come and walk amongst us. Victoricius is the only person named in St Patricks Confession. An ecclesiastic with this name, probably RomanoBritish, was bishop of Rouen and an important follower of St Martin. Like Martin, and in contrast to St Augustine, he followed the old Christian principle of active nonviolence. He founded rural monastaries and missions to barbarians north of Gaul. He came to Britain to teach the precepts of the martyrs and worked with its bishops on unspecified issues in 396. If he inspired or organised the mission to Ireland this would explain why Patrick gives his name. The Irish Christian community was significant enough by 431 for the pope to send his own secretary, Palladius, as their first bishop. He had worked with Germanus of Auxerre to suppress Pelagius teachings in Britain St Jerome called the Britishtrained Pelagius a porridgefed Scotus, so Irish by origin. The Christian communities in southeast Ireland seem to have had some clergy from Gaul, such as Secundinus, Auxilius and Iserninus, whose hilltop churches were near royal hill sites, while Decln, Ailbe, Ibar and Ciarn were British or Irish. There were also priests from Britain and Gaul working in north Leinster, the midlands, close to Tara and beside Cruachan, the royal hill site of Connacht.
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