Pope Francis on St. Patrick’s Day

(AMP) VATICAN CITY — During his weekly mass, Pope Francis urged Catholics to remember to “keep St. Patrick in St. Patrick’s day.”

The mass was the kickoff to St. Patrick’s week which culminates in St. Patrick’s day.

“It is very tempting to be distracted by all the beer and decadent green clothes. Parades full of glamour,” said Francis. “But those who partake in these activities forget the real meaning of St. Patrick’s Day.”

Francis criticized the commercialism that goes into the holiday, adding that “Hallmark is a company of grave sin that needs to come to confession.”

He urged all Catholics to “awake in the morning and ask St. Patrick to pray for us” before carrying out our daily routines. He further commented that we must “carry and remember of the real reason for this day as we interact with the world around us. Keep that desire for booty and a life at sea alive this St. Patrick’s Day season.”

St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland, best known for his career as the notorious pirate “One-eye Pat,” who brought the church to prosperity by stealing back the Ark of the Covenant from a band of pagans.