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A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE BROTHERS OF ST. PATRICK

The Congregation of the Brothers of St. Patrick or the Patrician Brothers as they are popularly known began in the small town of Tullow, Ireland on 2nd February, 1808. The Congregation was founded by Rt. Rev. Dr. Daniel Delaney, under the patronage of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. In 1846, the Brothers sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to Baltimore, USA and laid the foundation for their first mission abroad. In 1883, another group of Patricians arrived in Maitland, New South Wales, Australia. After establishing themselves, the brothers moved to Papua New Guinea, an island that needed the Brothers’ assistance. In 1875, the first foundation of the Patrician Brothers was laid in Chennai, India. In 1961, Brothers were drawn to Kenya. In 2007, the Indian Province took up a mission in Ghana, Africa and in 2012, South Sudan and Dubai. In 2008, the Brothers completed 200 years of their existence as harbingers of education, touching and making a difference in the lives of many. Today, the Patrician Brothers run schools, colleges, boarding houses, technical institutions, non-formal education centres and other education related institutions in Ireland, United States of America, India, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Kenya, Ghana, South Sudan and Dubai. The headquarters known as Generalate is located at Mount St. Patrick Academy, Pune and in India it has its headquarters known as Provincialate in Mount St. Mary’s New Delhi.


The Patrician Crest

The international crest of the Patrician Brothers has fairly self-explanatory symbolism.


Starting from the top we have rays of light coming from the cross of Christ as Jesus is the light of and for the world.  


The bishop's mitre alludes to our founder Bishop Daniel Delany, but it also reflects the special respect the Brothers have for the priesthood.  


The heart points to the love that God has for us by sending us His only Son to suffer and to die for us. It reminds us that we are also called to love others and to live with them in peace and charity.  


The harp reminds us of our Irish heritage as do the shamrocks to the left and right of the shield. The image here will differ on the crests of the two other Patrician provinces. The Australian and Papua New Guinean province has the star constellation the southern cross. The crest of the Indian province has the centrepiece of its national flag: the Ashoka Chakra, a 24-spoke wheel, a symbol of eternal law. The other sections of the Congregation (U.S.A., Kenya, and Ghana) use the international design.


The Bible reminds us that it is the Good News which must be at the centre of our apostolic and religious lives. We are called to proclaim the Good News by the example of our lives.


The shield of the crest which contains the mitre, heart, harp, and Bible, brings to mind the famous prayer "The Breastplate of St Patrick". This prayer, like a shield and like a plate of armour which protects the breast, can protect us from the harms of the world by celebrating that Christ is with us in our daily lives.  

The motto "Christus in Corde Omnium" is ancient Latin and translates to "Christ in all hearts", it is one line from the prayer the Breastplate of St Patrick.

This design was adopted by the Brothers in 1956 and initially its motto was “Pro Deo et Patria” which means “For God and Country”. The current motto was introduced in 2004 reflecting the centrality of the Christ of the Breastplate in Patrician spirituality.