While many were still trying to figure out what ‘Earth Day’ is and why they’d want to celebrate it with a themed Facebook post, the social network jumped the gun today and offered some the opportunity to celebrate St. George’s day as well — a full day early.
While the message from the American giant was filled with proto-patriotic sentiment, well-wishing members that they might “let the spirit of England fill you with pride today and every day”, either by oversight or error the stylised graphic arrived a day early.
That the dusky pink picture of roses being laid at the helmet of St. George arrived on the day of St Agapetus, the sixth century Pope instead, has prompted some amusement on social media. The image also did not include the St. George’s Cross – the typical image associated with the day, and with England.
Facebook just wished me a happy St George's day. Someone is getting fired..,..
— Georgia Challinor (@georgiadrums) April 22, 2016
So Facebook have st George's day wrong or have I just slept through a whole day and into my birthday
— Isabel (@isabelworrell) April 22, 2016
Others were less impressed, either because they believed Facebook staff had enjoyed one too many ales on Friday lunchtime, or because their own national pride — hailing from Wales, Scotland, or Ulster, prevented them from joining in the fun.
Interest in St. George’s Day has been slowly growing in recent years as interest in the English national identity has moved to catch up with that already enjoyed by the other constituent parts of the Kingdom. While Ireland’s St. Patrick’s day features in parades and parties across the globe, celebrations for St. George’s Day tend to be more discrete.
Speaking to Breitbart London today, historian and commentator on British symbols and identity Rafe Heydel-Mankoo said of the relationship between England and St. George: “Those, like Lady Nugee, who sneer at decent English folk for flying the St. George’s Cross and who dismiss as “Little Englanders” the growing numbers who proudly celebrate St. George’s Day, would do well to remember that St. George could very well be the poster boy for modern Christianity.
“He came to Europe, perhaps from Syria, and was later persecuted for his Christian beliefs and beheaded. A story that persecuted Christians today may seem familiar.
“He is today venerated as the national saint of Germany, Portugal, Greece, Bulgaria, Georgia, Palestine, Serbia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Portugal, Malta and Montenegro. St. George is arguably the greatest European”.
The intended themed post for the 22nd of May on Facebook was ‘Earth Day‘, accompanied with social media posts exhorting devotees to give up meat, and paper toilet roll, for the sake of environmentalism. As reported by Breitbart, the “anti fossil fuels” policy of the day could plunge millions into so-called “green energy poverty”.