Ireland, across the Atlantic Ocean in the northern hemisphere and close to England, is a small country only 174 miles wide by 302 miles long, about the size of Indiana. The verdant pastures are indicative of the vibrant, life-giving Catholic faith, which has prospered in spite of many tumultuous storms. Ireland is a land known for St. Patrick and his three-leaf clover, as well as for its Leprechauns, Irish luck, the Blarney Stone, and the harp. The harp became a symbol of resistance to England and was banned at the end of the 1500s but was reinstated as an emblem of the Irish Free State, which was established in 1922. Maintaining their Catholic customs, one can still hear the Irish greeting: “God and Mary be with you”, with the response of “God and Mary and Patrick be with you.” Ireland, averaging only three to four hours of sunshine a day, is beset with heavy rains and plenteous drizzle. It boasts a relatively temperate climate due to the gulf stream with an average summer temperature of 68 and winter temperature of 47, even though its latitude is far north. The mild winters and the damp summers cause the land to be covered with lush green vegetation, and has become known as the Emerald Isle. Tall trees are few because of the winds that blow in from the Atlantic on the west.