Tagged: Martyrs

Saint Lawrence, Deacon and Martyr

Image: Saint Lawrence crowned by Baby Jesus By Jean M. Heimann Today is the feast of Saint Lawrence, deacon and martyr. Lawrence was one of the seven deacons of the Church of Rome. In 258, he was martyred along with Pope Sixtus II and other deacons. St. Lawrence was in charge of caring for the poor and had a great love for the destitute and...

Saint Sixtus II and Companions, Martyrs

Saint Lawrence Receiving the Treasures of the Church from Pope Sixtus II August 7 is the optional memorial of Saint Sixtus II and his companions, Felicissimus and Agapitus, deacons. Pope Sixtus II was one of the first victims of the persecution under the Emperor Valerian. Saint Sixtus II was a Greek philosopher and an adult convert to Christianity who became a deacon in Rome. He...

St. Apollinaris, Apologist, Miracle-Worker and Martyr

The saint of the day for July 20 is St. Apollinaris, an illustrious second century bishop and a great apologist for his time. Born in Antioch, Turkey, he became the first bishop of Ravenna, Italy, where he shepherded his flock for twenty-six years. St. Apollinaris  defended the Christian religion to the emperor Marcus Aurelius, who, shortly before, had obtained a victory over the Quadi, a...

Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul

  By Jean M. Heimann June 29 is the solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, who are the co-founders of the Catholic Church. Both were martyrs for the faith. “Both apostles share the same feast day, for these two were one; and even though they suffered on different days, they were as one. Peter went first, and Paul followed. And so we celebrate this day...

St. Boniface: Apostle of Germany

June 5 is the memorial of St. Boniface, bishop and martyr. He was chosen by God to become Germany’s great apostle and patron. St. Boniface is the patron of: brewers, file cutters, and tailors. St. Boniface was born in Devonshire, England, around 680. Known as the apostle of Germany, Boniface was an English Benedictine monk who gave up being elected abbot to devote his life...

Sts. Marcelinus and Peter, Martyrs

On June 2, we honor Sts. Marcellinus and Peter — two fourth century Roman martyrs who suffered under the Diocletian persecution. Marcellinus was a priest, Peter an exorcist. Peter was thrown into prison at Rome, under the emperor Diocletian, by the judge, Serenus, for stating that he was a Christian. While in prison, he freed Paulina, the daughter of Artemius, the prison keeper, from an...

Feast of Saints Philip and James, Apostles

Today is the feast of two Apostles, Saints Philip and James. The two are connected on this feast day as they shared the patronage of an ancient Roman basilica, which is known today as the Church of the Twelve Apostles. The church was built around their relics. Their names are mentioned in the first list in the Canon of the Mass. Philip, a fisherman, came from...

St. Roderick of Cordoba, Priest and Martyr

The saint of the day for March 13 is St. Roderick of Cordoba. Also known as Ruderic, he was a priest in Cabra, Spain during the persecution of Christians by the Moors. Roderick had two brothers, one was a Muslim and the other, a fallen-away Catholic. One day, he tried to stop an argument between his two brothers. However, his brothers turned on him and...

St. Fabian, the Farmer who became Pope

The saint of the day for January 20 is St. Fabian, pope (236-250) and martyr. Eusebius, a historian, recounted that Fabian was a layperson, most likely a farmer, who came to Rome, when the people were electing a successor to Pope Anterus. As a layperson, he may have come for the same reason many still come to Rome today during a papal election: concern for...

The Feast of the Holy Innocents, Martyrs

Today we commemorate the Feast of the Holy Innocents. All male children under the age of two in Bethlehem were massacred by King Herod the Great in an attempt to kill the child Jesus. We call these Holy Innocents, martyrs, because they died in the place of Christ. St. Augustine called them “buds, killed by the frost of persecution the moment they showed themselves.” In...