I AM PATRICK docudrama reveals the true St. Patrick

I AM PATRICK is an excellent feature-length docudrama about the life of one of my favorite saints, the Apostle to Ireland. Written and directed by Jarrod Anderson and produced by CBN Films, the film is based on St. Patrick’s own Confession. The dramatic parts are well-acted, including the segments with John Rhys-Davies, where he is writing his Confession. I wish he had had a bigger role!

The interviews are well-done with a good mix of experts; the flow back and forth between interviews, narration, and dramatized scenes take us through the life of Saint Patrick in an overall linear fashion. The focus here is not on the legends and miracles, but the life of St. Patrick from his own words, which has plenty of drama in itself: he was kidnapped and enslaved at age 16; dramatically escaped after six years; heard God’s call in a dream to return to Ireland as a missionary; and evangelized Ireland under very difficult and hostile circumstances, at times risking his life to share the Good News of Jesus Christ.

For the most part, the film’s interpretation of Patrick’s life seems quite accurate. (I researched the life of Saint Patrick for a chapter in one of my books on the saints.) The only nuance I would dispute is found near the end of the film, when Patrick’s integrity, and perhaps his authority as bishop, is being questioned by a couple other bishops. In his Confession, Patrick doesn’t provide specifics, neither why he was being questioned nor how the situation was resolved. What he does make clear is that he was vindicated. However, the film seems to give Patrick a rather individualistic vibe, as if Patrick simply rebelled against the other bishops and went his own way. But to be in communion with the Church would have been very important to Patrick, and he would have wanted his new converts in Ireland to be in communion with the Church.

Check out my comments on I AM PATRICK on Salt + Light’s Radio Hour here. 

As the docudrama of a life of a saint, I AM PATRICK is remarkably well-done, with insightful interviews, well-acted drama, and narration that offers a helpful historical perspective. The quotations from Patrick’s Confession don’t just provide a remarkable authenticity, but are particularly moving in revealing St. Patrick’s depth of emotion, passion for Christ, and conviction for evangelization. Watching this docudrama is an informative delight, both for those who don’t know Saint Patrick well (or only through popular legends) or those who would like to deepen their knowledge of the real Saint Patrick’s life and mission. 

By the way, if you are interested in going right to the Saint Patrick’s own words to learn more about him, English translations of his Confession and his Letter to Coroticus can be found for free online. I include below the prayer I wrote to Saint Patrick for Saints Alive! The Gospel Witnessed.

I AM PATRICK is releasing theatrically in theaters in the USA for just two days, March 17 & 18. Seeing this film is a great way to truly celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day, whether you are able to see it in theaters for its theatrical release, or you keep an eye out for its streaming/DVD release. For more information and to find tickets, visit  https://www.iampatrick.com/  

Prayer to Saint Patrick

St. Patrick,
you suffered greatly in your life:
kidnapping, loss of family, slavery, isolation, and betrayal.
Your sufferings did not embitter you
but brought you to a deeper relationship with Christ
and gave you great compassion for others who suffered.
Have pity on those who suffer violence and slavery in our own day.
Teach us to allow the Spirit to pray in us,
so that we too can witness to the Gospel
by living the spirit of forgiveness
and loving with the heart of Christ.
Amen.

 

One thought on “I AM PATRICK docudrama reveals the true St. Patrick

  1. Thanks Sr Marie Paul,

    As an Irishman living in the UK I appreciate your reminder of my spiritual roots.
    I think God is speaking to the people of Ireland at this time. This St Patrick’s Day every pub in Ireland will be closed and all the street parades cancelled because of the Coronavirus. Ireland is tipping very much in the direction of a secular society. Some parishes now have as low as 5% Sunday attendance, and many young people are growing up with parents who’ve never attended church. St Patrick needs to come back again pretty soon…

    Like

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