Patrick was kidnapped by the Irish at the age of 16 and was a slave for six years before making a daring escape. Years later, as a bishop, he returned to Ireland. Traveling all over the island, he proclaimed the Good News and planted churches. He wrote a famous letter condemning the practice of slavery — and got in trouble for it. Legend has it that his bishop’s staff once sprouted leaves when he planted it in the ground to preach. An excerpt from the Confessions of St. Patrick is part sermon, part autobiography, and all interesting. Skip to paragraph 16 to pick up on his life in slavery in Ireland.