Hardened physically and psychologically by unsharable experiences, hopelessly behind his peers in education, he cannot settle down. One night in his parents’ house, a man he knew in Ireland visits him in vision: Victoricus, holding “countless letters,” one of which he hands to Patricius, who reads its heading – VOX HIBERIONACUM, The Voice of the Irish. At that moment, he hears the voice of a multitude (beside a forest that Patricius remembers as being “near the western sea”), crying: “We beg you to come and walk among us once more.” “Stabbed in the heart, ” he is unable to read further – and so he wakes up.
Try though he might, he cannot put the Irish out of his mind. The visions increase, and Christ begins to speak within him: “He who gave his life for you, he it is who speaks within you.” Patricius, the escaped slave, is about to be drafted once more – as Saint Patrick, apostle to the Irish nation.Cahill, How the Irish Saved Civilization, pp. 105-106
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