Can Catholics please vote in this poll? - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-23-2011, 02:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mods, I didn't put this in the religion forum because it's not a religious issue.

 

Catholics, can you please answer a question without googling?  I'd really appreciate it.  DH and I had a disagreement about an issue and I need to see if something he said is a commonly held belief.

 

Question:

Would you, as a Catholic, be offended if your child went to an Anglican youth group which was having an "orange night"? (wear orange clothes).

 

DH (Catholic) says it's deeply offensive and was upset about it for hours.  I (Anglican but went to Catholic schools) hadn't even heard of "Orange Men" or "Orange Order".  DS says the 'orange night' was about fruits of the spirit but felt so uncomfortable about it after his father's outburst that he wore a blue shirt.

 

Thanks for your input.

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Old 09-23-2011, 03:09 AM
 
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Never heard of Orange Men or Orange Order.

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Old 09-23-2011, 03:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry, I was in a rush and I forgot to add the poll.  Can you please just give your opinion?  Thanks.

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Old 09-23-2011, 06:48 AM
 
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Never heard of it and I went to Catholic school for 12 years. 

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Old 09-23-2011, 07:15 AM
 
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I wouldn't let them, but I wouldn't necessarily be offended. Orangemen are Northerin Irish Protestants who do all the marching in July through Catholic areas of Belfast/Northern Ireland to celebrate (if your them) or rub it in (if you're Catholic) that William of Orange won the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, which was the real start of the troubles in the north.
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Old 09-23-2011, 08:37 AM
 
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uh... i'm not catholic but ran it by dh who was raised as such and his reaction was this

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but he's pretty invested in the history irish mommy describes.

please tell me it was a celebrate fall thing.  they meant pumpkins and stuff, right?


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Old 09-23-2011, 11:51 AM
 
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Honestly, I had no idea about orange men, though DH said he knows all about it (he's Irish... though we're both Catholic).

I guess I would've assumed it was a fall/Halloween thing. Knowing the history behind it/potential meaning now, I might want to investigate further before allowing my child to go.

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Old 09-23-2011, 12:53 PM
 
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Irish American Protestant mom, Italian American Catholic dad.  I'm familiar with the issue.

 

You're son already went and wore a blue shirt. That was good of him to support his dad.  I would ask at the church about it. 


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Old 09-23-2011, 07:18 PM
 
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I think it's more an Irish thing than a Catholic thing -- the orange vs. green. 


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Old 09-23-2011, 08:24 PM
 
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I went to 12 years of Catholic school and have never heard of it.  And my family is Irish Catholic.  Uhh, now I'm off to google!


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Old 09-23-2011, 09:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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No, it's not an autumn/halloween thing, it's spring here.  As I said, the youth group was doing a 'fruits of the spirit' thing, so they were focussing on being kind, loving, peaceful etc in their lives.  They all (except DS) wore orange shirts, they served oranges, orange cake, orange lollies etc.  They were just trying to give their lesson a visual boost for a bit of fun.

 

Since DH was upset about it, I'll encourage him to talk to the youth group leaders about perhaps having a different colour if they do it again.  The leaders are all Year 12 students and they had no idea about the colour (understandable, being an Anglican church in Australia).

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Old 09-23-2011, 09:29 PM
 
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I'm also a Catholic school graduate (and a very Irish one at that) and this stumps me. I only know of "Orange Men" within the context of the conflict in Northern Ireland. If the meeting had nothing to do with that, then what was it all about?

 

(Nevermind, I see we were posting at the same time.)

 

 

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Old 09-23-2011, 09:33 PM
 
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I think it's more of an Irish Catholic thing. I still think it's pretty crappy though.

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Old 09-23-2011, 10:17 PM
 
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Irish, not Catholic. Know the issue. Never, ever would have assumed it was "that" issue. Would assume that it was pumpkin something. Sometimes a pumpkin was just a pumpkin.

 

I would be truly astonished if it was "that" orange issue. 

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Old 09-24-2011, 12:16 AM
 
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My reaction was similar to your dh's.  This is such obvious church interaction history (Anglican/Catholic, English/Irish) that it wouldn't occur to me that anyone of Catholic or Irish descent wouldn't make that connection (I don't remember when I learned of it, perhaps because my grandmother was raised Presbyterian and converted to Catholicism when she married my Irish Catholic grandfather?).  I know I didn't learn it in a church context, it was just something discussed at home (and not in a "hating on the British" sort of way, just an explanation of what the significance of the color orange in that context was). 

Also, I had a friend in high school whose mother was Scottish, and Catholic, and I heard from her about the very bitter feelings and interactions between Anglicans and Catholics where her mother grew up. 

I honestly wonder whether the kids who planned the event simply knew that Orange had some cultural significance, but didn't know the back story?  Although that seems hard to believe .... It's possible, though, that they didn't realize what additional connotations there were.  It might be good to talk to them so that, if they were unaware, they learn and change the color for the next celebration; and if they were aware, perhaps a better understanding of the emotional issue that it is, even today.  It's not that long ago that there were regular terrorist attacks in Northern Ireland (and sometimes in Britain too). 


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Old 09-24-2011, 12:37 AM
 
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Fascinating. I'm not Catholic, but married to an ex-Catholic and vaguely aware of the fact that orange = Protestants and green = Catholics. I'd never heard of Orangemen, and neither had DH (I asked). I am Irish by descent, but not as up on Irish politics as I probably should be...

 

I have, however, gone to an orange-themed day. For the life of me I can't remember what it was - school? I think? Or a library thing? I'm pretty darned positive it wasn't anti-Catholic, though; this is New Zealand. I remember being peeved because I hated the colour orange and couldn't find anything decent to wear. :p But yeah, I think it was just a gimmicky novelty. So such things do happen. And in Australia? Yeah, I think your DH was imputing some VERY foreign motives to the youth group.

 

Out of curiosity, is wearing green on St Patrick's Day specifically connoting Catholicism, as distinct from Ireland or Christianity in general? I'd always assumed it was just an "Emerald Isles" thing, but does the green-wearing offend Protestants? Everyone I know who dresses up in green here just does it as a non-religious, non-Irish way to get drunk. :p


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Old 09-24-2011, 07:22 AM
 
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Heck no.  That is so offensive, I don't even know what to say about it.


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Old 09-24-2011, 09:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokering View Post

Out of curiosity, is wearing green on St Patrick's Day specifically connoting Catholicism, as distinct from Ireland or Christianity in general? I'd always assumed it was just an "Emerald Isles" thing, but does the green-wearing offend Protestants? Everyone I know who dresses up in green here just does it as a non-religious, non-Irish way to get drunk. :p



Green on St. Pat's day is a catholic thing. Irish protestants do NOT celebrate St Patricks day. It's a saint's day, and protestants don't celebrate catholic saints.

 

(St. Patrick's day is a much bigger deal in the US than it is in Ireland.)

 

My DH is an Irish Protestant by birth, and an American Atheist by choice. He thinks it is ignorant of American non-catholics to wear green on St. Patrick's day, and to not realize that a day with SAINT in the title has something to do with the Catholic church. He isn't offended by it, he just thinks it's ignorant.

 

My take on the Orange Day planned by a church is that most likely the people who planned it had no understanding of the history.

 

But I do find it ironic that anyone would get super upset over it but feel fine about dressing their child in green, the color of the IRA, for a catholic holiday. It's the same thing.

 

 


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Old 09-24-2011, 10:17 AM
 
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I'm Irish Catholic and I find this deeply offensive, but it's not a Catholic thing necessarily. It's more of a celebration of hundreds of years of British rule and oppression over Ireland.

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Old 09-24-2011, 10:34 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokering View Post

Out of curiosity, is wearing green on St Patrick's Day specifically connoting Catholicism, as distinct from Ireland or Christianity in general? 

 

Originally yes, but I would wager that the majority of people who celebrate St. Patrick's Day (at least in the U.S., where it's a much bigger holiday than anywhere else) don't know that, so in the U.S. mainstream it's become much more aligned with what you describe below.  

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokering View Post

Everyone I know who dresses up in green here just does it as a non-religious, non-Irish way to get drunk. :p


 


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Old 09-24-2011, 12:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post





Green on St. Pat's day is a catholic thing. Irish protestants do NOT celebrate St Patricks day. It's a saint's day, and protestants don't celebrate catholic saints.

 

(St. Patrick's day is a much bigger deal in the US than it is in Ireland.)

 

My DH is an Irish Protestant by birth, and an American Atheist by choice. He thinks it is ignorant of American non-catholics to wear green on St. Patrick's day, and to not realize that a day with SAINT in the title has something to do with the Catholic church. He isn't offended by it, he just thinks it's ignorant.

 

My take on the Orange Day planned by a church is that most likely the people who planned it had no understanding of the history.

 

But I do find it ironic that anyone would get super upset over it but feel fine about dressing their child in green, the color of the IRA, for a catholic holiday. It's the same thing.

 

 


St. Patrick's Day is not a much bigger deal in the US. It's just as big a deal in Ireland (it's a national holiday). We just don't go over the top, begosh and begorra, stupid green hats, green beer, green rivers like the Americans do.

And green is not the colour of the IRA. The IRA doesn't have a colour. Green is the national colour of Ireland.
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Old 09-24-2011, 01:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgallagher66 View Post

I'm Irish Catholic and I find this deeply offensive, but it's not a Catholic thing necessarily. It's more of a celebration of hundreds of years of British rule and oppression over Ireland.


yeahthat.gif  I suppose 'victors' and their descendants might not see how it could be offensive - but it does go beyond religion an gets into issues of empire, intentional attacks on culture/language of conquered people, confiscation of lands and goods from the 'conquered,' etc.  There are centuries of bad blood over the ways that the British interacted with the Irish (Jonathan Swift's "Modest Proposal" was so effective as an ironic satire in part because he was parroting thoughts and statements which were common at the time, about Ireland and the Irish - thus highlighting how awful those things really were). 

I think it's much easier for those who were outside the situation, or who were the "oppressors," to believe things should be forgiven and forgotten, especially when we're talking about things that grandparents, great-greats, etc. were involved in (or, that none of our own ancestors were involved with, at all).  For those whose ancestors endured it - who perhaps survived only by immigrating to America (or Australia, or Canada) during one of the potato famines -- then, it's not so easy to laugh off an "Orange Day" celebration, especially in the context of the Anglican church organizing it.  From a historical perspective, understanding the roots and the channels that conflicts like the one between Ireland and England followed, is the only way to prevent similar conflicts from arising in the future (and, understanding how the Irish and British have begun the healing process, could have important lessons for other areas of the world where there are centuries-long grievances). 

I come at this from a historical perspective - I love history, and I have always been interested in it.  Frankly, I think most school kids would find history more interesting if stories like this became a part of the discussion - it brings history alive and shows how it impacts us, that history is a living thing. 

 

 


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Old 09-24-2011, 02:12 PM
 
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Quote:
it's not so easy to laugh off an "Orange Day" celebration, especially in the context of the Anglican church organizing it.

 

Right. That's why it wouldn't be a bad idea if the OPs husband gently asked the organizers if they know the origins of the Orange Day celebration. 

 

 

Edited to add,

 

 

Quote:
He thinks it is ignorant of American non-catholics to wear green on St. Patrick's day, and to not realize that a day with SAINT in the title has something to do with the Catholic church.

 

Linda, your dh is making a common mistake.  The Roman Catholic church does not have an exclusive connection to all saints.  The Anglican/Episcopal, Methodist and other protestant churches also celebrate and venerate saints.  Patrick is a great example.  He was canonized back when the church was still just The Church, the reformation hadn't occurred yet.  The saints that the Roman Catholic church canonized after the reformation generally are not venerated by other Christian churches. 

 

So protestants have as much right to celebrate Saint Patrick's day as Roman Catholics do.  Now should non Christians not celebrate the day? I dunno.  I hope they wouldn't be barred. I think humans need rituals.


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Old 09-24-2011, 03:11 PM
 
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That brings up an interesting point. In evangelical Protestant circles, it is believed that all Christians are saints by definition; so it's not inherently un-Protestant to refer to Patrick as St Patrick, as long as there is no veneration involved (ie, I could equally refer to my dad as St David... although I wouldn't, 'cause that would be weird). I know some diehard Protestants who talk about "Saint Paul" and "Saint Luke", simply as a verbal habit - probably left over from the days when most translations of the Bible titled the books that way, occasionally to differentiate between characters (John vs St John, for instance).

 

Now, as far as I know St Patrick held pretty standard Catholic beliefs for his day, so it might be odd for a Protestant to celebrate his teaching/evangelising those beliefs; it would for me. But some might take a broader view and say "Hey, he did a lot for the cause of Christ, even if I wish he'd taught X theological point instead of Y", and celebrate anyway. Wearing green... well, I guess that's the age-old "do holidays change" question, isn't it? Like, if green was originally meant to represent Catholicism, but in the public mind now represents Ireland, doesn't it, by common usage, symbolise both? In NZ, as I say, it pretty much means "I have enough Irish ancestry to claim Irishness for the night; or I don't, but I want to get drunk, and I don't care". :p Isn't it a bit like the whole "Christmas is about spending time with family" thing? It annoys Christians, who attach a religious meaning to the holiday (and Pagans, but that's another story), but it can't just be dismissed as "not what Christmas is about" any more, due to common usage.

 

So.... ehh, I dunno. I've never celebrated it anyway, and probably won't in the future - except that DD was born on St Patrick's Day, so I guess I'll celebrate something! My Catholic FIL, whose name happens to be Patrick, was most put out that we didn't name DD Patricia. :p


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Old 09-24-2011, 05:36 PM
 
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I have not read the other posts yet, as I want my answer to be uninfluenced.

 

I would be hesitant, but not necessarily offended. 

 

To me orange means protestant and often in favour of union with Great Britain, while green is catholic, and the terms are often very political and refer to troubles in northern Ireland.

 

I would be ticked that it seemed they were taking political sides, I would research it further to see if my initial reaction was correct.

 

Oh, and I never heard about this in church (of which I admittedly remember little - although I do remember my RC instruction in high school).  I first heard about it through an Irish Rover song my mom played.  

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Old 09-24-2011, 07:23 PM
 
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If I were Irish, it would make me uncomfortable. But, as far as I know, the Anglicans aren't the ones marching around in orange to celebrate William of Orange. The protestants who were brought in Northern Ireland tend to not be Anglican, but more Calvinist in orientation (think Presbyterian). But since Catholics and people with relatives who are Catholics are not allowed to join the Order of the Orange, it's touchy. I don't know where in the Southern Hemisphere you live, but if there is a history of Catholic vs. Protestant trouble, it would bug me. Here in the US, not so much, as long as I didn't live in Boston. (OK, and I confess that I'm a former Catholic with an Irish-American Catholic mother.)


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Old 09-25-2011, 05:18 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graceomalley View Post

Mods, I didn't put this in the religion forum because it's not a religious issue.

 

Catholics, can you please answer a question without googling?  I'd really appreciate it.  DH and I had a disagreement about an issue and I need to see if something he said is a commonly held belief.

 

Question:

Would you, as a Catholic, be offended if your child went to an Anglican youth group which was having an "orange night"? (wear orange clothes).

 

DH (Catholic) says it's deeply offensive and was upset about it for hours.  I (Anglican but went to Catholic schools) hadn't even heard of "Orange Men" or "Orange Order".  DS says the 'orange night' was about fruits of the spirit but felt so uncomfortable about it after his father's outburst that he wore a blue shirt.

 

Thanks for your input.



I am Catholic, but I have no idea what orange night is. I wouldn't be sending my kid to another religions youth group though. 

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Old 09-25-2011, 05:19 PM
 
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I wouldn't let them, but I wouldn't necessarily be offended. Orangemen are Northerin Irish Protestants who do all the marching in July through Catholic areas of Belfast/Northern Ireland to celebrate (if your them) or rub it in (if you're Catholic) that William of Orange won the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, which was the real start of the troubles in the north.


In that case, absolutely not. 

 

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Old 09-26-2011, 08:37 AM
 
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Background -- the Republic of Ireland has been an independent country since 1949. Northern Ireland is a democracy that stayed part of the UK because that is what the majority of the people there want. The British said repeatedly that they would leave if the people of N. Ireland ever voted to become independent, but that as long as the majority of the people who live in N. Ireland wanted to be part of the UK, they would stay. 

 

The Troubles started in the late 60's and official ended in 1998 with the Good Friday Agreement. A few things have happened since then, but there has been a tremendous push to not escalate, to let things go. All of this is very, very raw in N. Ireland.
 

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yeahthat.gif  I suppose 'victors' and their descendants might not see how it could be offensive ....

I think it's much easier for those who were outside the situation, or who were the "oppressors," to believe things should be forgiven and forgotten, especially when we're talking about things that grandparents, great-greats, etc. were involved in

 


I'm willing to wager I know more people from N. Ireland than any one else on this board -- I married into them!  I know both protestants and catholics from N. Ireland who still live there, and many who've moved to the US or Canada (they tend to hang out together after coming to north america).

 

None of them would think an "orange night" would be a good idea. None -- not even the former Orangeman I know who know lives here. So much so that I strongly doubt that a person who would organize an "orange night" has any idea the history of this color and how it relates to the situation in N. Ireland.  My guess is the organizer was going for a fall color.

 

None of this is about grandparents. Every person I know my age from N. Ireland knows someone who was killed in The Troubles. My DH spent his youth being a poll bearer for people murdered by the IRA. The building he worked in was bombed. And the terrorists responsible for those crimes have all been released from prison as part of the peace process because they were "political prisoners."  This stuff is very, very raw for people from N. Ireland.

 

The violence on both sides was propagated by a very small percentage of people, and the Orangemen were never a part of it. The Orange Order actively discouraged violence, actively discouraged their members from getting involved in paramilitary groups. The way Irishmommy describes the Orange Order is how the IRA painted them, but before the IRA and The Troubles, they were the protestant counter part of the Ancient Order of the Hibernians, a catholic group. Both groups got along, communicated, lent each other old weapons. Both groups marched at different times. They were family times to talk about history. All the changed with the troubles, which is when my father-in-law, a very peaceful man, left the Orange Order.

 

For the most part, people in northern Ireland, both protestant and catholic, just want peace. They want their lives to be normal in ways that were not possible during The Troubles. They want their kids to grow up without watching friends be murdered. Which is part of the reason why they would never want to be involved in an "orange night" that related to any of this. Wearing colors is the first step to fist fight, which is step to a gun, or a baseball bat to the knees,  or a home made bomb. No one wants to go down that path.  No one who has seen what the end of that path looks like.

 

So, your assumption that this was all a really long time ago and Protestants just don't get it isn't true. Not at all.
 

Quote:
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St. Patrick's Day is not a much bigger deal in the US. It's just as big a deal in Ireland (it's a national holiday). We just don't go over the top, begosh and begorra, stupid green hats, green beer, green rivers like the Americans do.

And green is not the colour of the IRA. The IRA doesn't have a colour. Green is the national colour of Ireland.


 

The Republic of Ireland and  Northern Ireland are not the same country, and won't be any time soon. Referring to them as if they when you know they aren't is offensive to those who live the DEMOCRATIC north. Northern Ireland is part of the UK because the majority of the people who live there want it that way and they didn't back down when attacked repeated by terrorist.

 

St. Patrick's day isn't a holiday in N. Ireland, and according to your own post, is celebrated in more extreme ways in the US than in the Republic of Ireland.

 

Green is the national color of the Republic of Ireland. Not the whole island. The island and the country aren't the same.

 

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 09-26-2011, 08:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

But, as far as I know, the Anglicans aren't the ones marching around in orange to celebrate William of Orange.


 

In N. Ireland, the Anglican faith is known as The Church of Ireland.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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