Along with all the shamrocks, green beer, corned beef, parades, and other St. Patrick's Day traditions, there's always that lingering question: What does all this have to do with St. Patrick, anyway? He tends to be overlooked in the hubbub and cultural pride, but he's not forgotten. Especially not on the Web, where surfers can read articles not just about Patrick, but some written by the fifth-century missionary. A recommended first stop is to Christianity Today's sister publication Christian History. Issue 60 of this quarterly magazine was devoted to " How the Irish Were Saved: The culture and faith of Celtic Christians." The lead article, " Patrick the Saint," provides a thorough summary of what's known about Patrick's life. Other articles in the issue include an excerpt from Thomas Cahill's How the Irish Saved Civilization about how Patrick may have ended human sacrifice in Ireland, profiles of other important Celtic Christians, and analyses of Celtic Christianity then and now. From there, you can read Patrick's own autobiography. His Confession is both an account of his life and a defense of his work. The other work scholars agree was truly written by Patrick is his angry Letter to Coroticus, excommunicating the British tyrant for carrying off some of Patrick's converts into slavery. The most famous of writings attributed to Patrick, the " Lorica" or " Breastplate," was not actually written by him. Still, it's a wonderful example of why Celtic Christians are known for exalting both creation and the Creator. Sometime between the fifth and eighth centuries, a biographical hymn was written about Patrick. Traditionally attributed to Fiacc, a fifth-century Bard, the Hymn of Fiacc is one of the few accepted primary sources for the life of St. Patrick other than his own writings.More recently, biographies of Patrick have been written by Christians of every persuasion. The St. Patrick You Never Knew at American Catholic and the Catholic Encyclopedia give a Roman Catholic spin on Patrick while Bob Jones University and Wilderness Voice Publications weave a very (ahem, very) Protestant tale. Such distinctions are a bit silly, however, considering that Patrick lived a millennium before the Protestant Reformation. By the way, strictly speaking, Patrick was never officially canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. In a less agenda-driven account, offers about 1,000 words on Ireland's patron saint and The History Channel has an extensive history of St. Patrick's Day that includes a brief but decent biographical sketch. World magazine's March 18 issue offers a reflection on Ireland's conversion as an example of God's modus operandi: "Thus was Christianity saved, by the skin of its teeth, by illiterate islanders and the runts of Europe—though that's just the view "under the sun," of course. For was it not God's usual way of doing business, after all, snatching victory from defeat, the better to show his all-surpassing power? He lets the promise to Eve dangle on a thread, eight people bobbing in an ark over the mountains of Ararat. He lets the remnant grow so thin in spots that Elijah protests he is the only one left. … And so the drama is reincarnated in every era."Finally, if Celtic Christianity is of interest, subscribe to Christianity Today now to receive our annual books issue, which will include an article by Loren Wilkenson on modern Celtic Christianity and the glut of books on the subject.Ted Olsen is Online Editor of