ST PATRICK'S DAY GREETINGS FROM PRESIDENT MARY McALEESE
Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig ar chlann mhór dhomhanda na nGael, sa bhaile agus ar fud na cruinne, ar ár lá náisiúnta ceiliúrtha.
I am delighted to send St Patrick’s Day greetings to all those taking part in this year's celebrations, whether at home in Ireland or around the world. St Patrick's festival is our special opportunity to deepen and celebrate the bonds of heritage and affection which link the global, Irish family and its friends worldwide. It is a great showcase of the Irish love of life and this year, more than any in our recent past, is one to savour with special joy. The welcome return of devolved government to Northern Ireland has brought to the island of Ireland a promising era of peace, prosperity and partnership. Thank you for all the support and encouragement you invested in our long, hard journey to this time of concord. There can be little doubt that the best is yet to come!
I hope that the many new immigrants to Ireland who will be joining the celebrations this year will take inspiration from the most influential immigrant of them all, St Patrick himself. Today his name and that of Ireland are synonymous and each year as we gather in his honour, we can see the widening global reach and richly diverse character of his extensive family. To each one of you I wish a wonderful St Patrick's Day 2008. Enjoy it wherever you are! May St Patrick long continue to bless you, his beloved Ireland and her people.
PRESIDENT OF IRELAND