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Born 5th century, Ireland
Died 5th century
Venerated in Roman Catholicism
Major shrine Ardmore
Feast July 24
Saint Declan was an early Irish bishop and abbot. He is sometimes said to be one of four bishops to have preceded Saint Patrick in Ireland in the early 5th century (See also Saints Ailbhe, Ciaran, and Ibar), although he is also made a contemporary of Saint David in the mid-6th century. His feast day is July 24.
He converted the people of the Decies, an ancient principality of southern Ireland, to Christianity. There he founded the monastic settlement of Ardmore. Although Ardmore is no longer the seat of a diocese, the local Catholic parish bears Declan's name. His Life is preserved in both a Latin and Irish version; the latter was translated into English by Rev. P. Power in 1914.
Every year on his feast day, locals and people from the region celebrate his pattern. The pattern includes various devotional acts at sites associated with his life.
Site County Waterford :
Saint Declan's Stone - Ardmore
Ardmore is the oldest Christian settlement in Ireland. St. Declan lived in the period 350 -450 AD and christianised this area before the coming of St. Patrick. St. Declan's feast day is "Pattern Day" every 24th of July.
According to legend, this stone was carried miraculously on the waves from Wales following Declan's visit there. Beneath the two supporting points is left a little hollow, through which devotees would painfully drag themselves in prayer on "Pattern" Day the 24th July, in the belief of receiving health or spiritual benefits. Declan founded a seminary in Ardmore circa 416. The Holy Well served as a Baptistery to the primitive Christian missionaries. Declan Christianised the area of Decies before St. Patrick came in 431. They met a number of times at Cashel. Declan retired for greater seclusion to a little cell he had made himself at the spot where now is the ruined church beside the Holy Well. There is no uniform date for this church; the western section is the earlier construction, whereas parts of the eastern end show signs of 14th century work.