Pre-Schism Orthodox Western Saints
17th August (NS) — 4th August (OS)

by | 17 Aug, 2017 | Orthodox Western Saints

4th August O.S.

AGABIUS, a third century A.D. Bishop of Verona, of whom, sixteenth century A.D. ecclesiastical historian, Cardinal Baronius said was “Eminent for his love of God, for his gentle manners and for his liberality towards the poor”. No further details of his life are extant.

EPIPHANES of BESANÇON, (Date Unknown), an early martyr who were venerated at the Cathedral of Besançon in France until the French Revolution. Whilst it is possible there was information of his life up to then, nothing has survived to this day.

EUPHRONIUS, the eighteenth Bishop of Tours from A.D. 555 until his repose A.D. 573. He was succeeded by St. Gregory of Tours (17th November). St Euphronius played an important role in the rebuilding of Tours after it had been severely destroyed by fire.

ISIDORE of BESANÇON, (Date Unknown), an early martyr who were venerated at the Cathedral of Besançon in France until the French Revolution. Whilst it is possible there was information of his life up to then, nothing has survived to this day.

Prior to the Schism the Patriarchate of Rome was Orthodox, and fully in communion with the Orthodox Church. As Saint John of Shanghai and San Francisco +1966 said “The West was Orthodox for a thousand years, and her venerable Liturgy is far older than any of her heresies”.

LUA (LUGID, MOLUA), A disciple of St. Comgall (10th May), St. Lua spent the early part of his monastic life at the great monastery of Bangor. He was acclaimed for his great asceticism and the Rule he wrote for his monks was one of the most austere of its kind. There are many legends about St. Lua of doubtful veracity. It is said he was the founder (some legends say builder) of one hundred and twenty churches or monasteries, and that, even as a child, he was a wonderworker. Miracles attributed to him include St. Lua’s cure of his father’s cancerous foot. St. Lua reposed in the early part of the seventh century, various years from A.D. 609 to 622 have been given. In Scotland, his feast was traditionally kept on 25th June.

PEREGRINUS, MACERATUS, and VIVENTIUS, (Sixth Century), according to tradition, most likely apocryphal, they were brothers from Spain, who died in France whilst attempting to rescue their sister from some unknown captivity.

PERPETUA, a Roman matron who was baptised by the Apostle Peter (29th June), and then who converted her husband and son, St. Nazarius (28th July). St. Perpetua’s reposed circa A.D. 80, most likely in Rome, but her relics are enshrined in Milan for centuries.

PROTASIUS, (Date Unknown), a martyr who was honoured in Cologne in present-day Germany, about whom nothing further is known.

SITHNEY (SEZNI), a native of Britain, St. Sithney went to Guic-Sezni in Brittany, where he founded a monastery. He is also the patron saint of Sithney in Cornwall. St. Sithney reposed circa A.D. 529 and his relics were enshrined at Guic-Sezni.

TERTULLINUS, a priest who was martyred in Rome under Emperor Valerian. According to tradition his martyrdom was only two days after his ordination in A.D. 257.

17th August N.S.

AMOR (AMATOR, AMOUR), (Eighth Century), a disciple of St. Pirmin (3rd November), and founder of the monastery of Amorbach in Lower Franconia, present-day Bavaria Germany.

ANASTASIUS, according to tradition, St. Anastasius was a native of Syria, who came to Umbria and settled as a hermit near Perugia. In time, he was elevated to the Episcopacy. As Bishop of Terni, he was known as a most humble and virtuous prelate. He reposed circa A.D. 553.

BENEDICTA and CECILIA, (Tenth Century), two daughters of the King of Lorraine who both received monastic tonsure and later served successively as Abbesses of Susteren Abbey near present-day Roermond, Limburg, Netherlands.

CARLOMAN, the eldest son of Charles Martel, he became King of Austrasia upon the death of his father. He encouraged the foundation of monasteries at Fulda in Germany and Lobbes and Stavelot in Belgium. In August A.D. 747, St. Carloman renounced his kingdom, and received monastic tonsure from Pope Zachary. He founded a monastery on Mt. Soracte, and later went to Monte Cassino. He reposed at Vienne in France A.D. 754, and was buried at Monte Cassino.

EUSEBIUS, a native of Greece, who whilst living in Rome became embroiled in a violent dispute over the readmission of apostates after the persecutions under Diocletian. He was exiled to Sicily by the Emperor Maxentius, reposing almost immediately, circa A.D. 310.

HIERO (IERO), an Irishman who went to the Low Lands to preach the Gospel, and was martyred, most likely at Noordwijk, A.D. 885.

JAMES the DEACON, (Seventh Century), the little we know of St. James is from St. Bede the Venerable’s (25th May) writings on St. Paulinus of York (10th October) in the (Historia Ecclesiastica 2:16 and 2:20). It appears St. James was a member of the mission led by St. Augustine of Canterbury (27th May). St. James served as St. Paulinus’ deacon when he accompanied St. Ethelburgh (5th April) to Northumbria upon her marriage to King St. Edwin (12th October). Following King St. Edwin’s martyrdom (A.D. 633), SS. Ethelburga and Paulinus returned to Kent leaving St. James as the sole member of the mission in Northumbria It is not understood why St. Paulisnus did not ordain St. James to the priesthood when he left him in charge, and St. James remained a deacon until his repose.

Following the complete collapse of the secular power which had supported the Church, Christianity faced active pagan opposition. Nevertheless, St. James, from his base near the village of Catterick in Yorkshire, tirelessly and faithfully ministered to his flock, and won many new souls for Christ as well. He was quite talented musically and skilled in the Roman chants composed by St. Gregory the Dialogist (3rd September), known to us today as Gregorian Chant. St. James taught these to his flock, and once peace returned and the churches reopened, the services in Northumbria were beautified by these chants. The exact date of St. James’ repose in not known, but it is believed that he lived at least thirty years after the repose of King St. Edwin (A.D. 633), and was personally known to St. Bede the Venerable (A.D. 673-735). According to some sources he participated in the Synod of Whitby which took place A.D. 664.

Troparion of St. James the Deacon – Tone IV

Wholly adorned with the virtues, O James most wise, thou wast a

beauteous ornament of the Church of Christ; for, ordering well its

sacred rituals, thou didst adorn them with psalmody most sweet, and

labouring well in the field of thy Lord, thou didst reap a great

harvest of men’s souls. Wherefore, grant the gift of sacred hymnody

to those in need thereof, that all may sing with fervour: Rejoice,

O most glorious father, great boast of pious deacons!

LIBERATUS, BONIFACE, SERVUS, RUSTICUS, ROGATUS, SEPTIMUS, and MAXIMUS, martyred under the Arian King Hunneric. Liberatus was abbot of a monastery in North Africa, the others were monks. They are said to have been subjected to unspeakable tortures before being killed A.D. 483.

THEODULUS (THEODORE) of GRAMMONT, (Fourth Century), most likely the first Bishop of Valais. He founded the Abbey of Saint-Maurice, the oldest north of the Alps.

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