Western Saints of the Orthodox Church <br class="clearfix">—<br class="clearfix"> 19th October
ALTINUS (ATTINUS), a first century missionary bishop who is credited with founding the churches of Orléans and Chartres (both in north-central France). There is an alternate tradition in which St. Altinus is said to have flourished in the fourth century and was a martyr.
AQUILINUS of EVREUX, returning home after fighting the Visigoths under Clovis II, King of Neustria and Burgundy (r. 639–657), St. Aquilinus, a Frankish nobleman, and his wife agreed to separate and dedicate their lives and wealth to caring for the sick and the poor. St. Aquilinus in 670 was consecrated Bishop of Evreux in Normandy (north-western France). He led more of a hermetical life than most bishops of his era. St. Aquilinus reposed in 695.
DESIDERIUS of LONGORET, a monk and disciple of St. Sigiranus (5th December) at the Abbey of St. Peter of Longoret (abbaye Saint-Pierre de Longoret) in the Diocese of Bourges (central France). St. Desiderius spent the later years of his life as a hermit in La Brenne near Bourges, reposing circa 705.
EDNOTH (EADNOT), a monk at Worcester Abbey (Worcestershire, West Midlands, England) and later Abbot of Ramsey Abbey (Huntingdonshire (now part of Cambridgeshire), England). St. Ednoth was consecrated Bishop of Dorchester in 1006, with his seat at Dorchester Abbey in Dorchester-on-Thames in Oxfordshire. In 1016 St. Ednoth was martyred by the Danes.
ETHBIN, born in Britain to a noble family, and educated in Brittany (north-western France) by St. Samson of Dol (28th July). Following his ordination to the Diaconate in 554 by St. Sampson, St. Ethbin entered Taurac Abbey where he remained until its sack by the Franks in 556. He then went to Ireland where he spent the rest of his life as a hermit in a forest near Kildare (mid-eastern Ireland). St. Ethbin reposed circa 625.
EUSTERIUS of SALERNO, (Fifth Century), the fourth Bishop of Salerno (south-western Italy). No further details are extant.
FRITHUSWITH (FRIDESWIDE) of OXFORD, the patron saint of the city and University of Oxford. We are entirely dependent on a brief account by the distinguished twelfth century English historian, man of letters, and monk, William of Malmesbury (†c. 1142), and two twelfth century Lives for any information on her life. According to these, St. Frithuswith was the daughter of Didanus, ‘King of Oxford’, and following the death of her mother, while St. Frithuswith was still a child, she received monastic tonsure and entered the double monastery of St. Mary the Virgin which had been founded by her father, serving as its first Abbess. The Lives also report she was miraculously transported to Bampton Oxfordshire, where she hid for three years, to escape the amorous attentions of Algar of Leciester. During this time, Algar is said to have tried to storm Oxford, it is assumed to take St. Frithuswith, but was struck dead at the town gates. St. Frithuswith then returned to Oxford and continued to serve as Abbess until her repose in either 727 or 735. St. Frithuswith is also believed to have spent some time at Binsey, near Oxford, where a holy well appeared in answer to her prayers. At some point following her repose her monastery came to be called after her, and there was a shrine containing her relics. The monastery was destroyed in 1002 during the St. Brice's Day massacre. Subsequent monastic houses at the site maintained a shrine for her relics, though during the Reformation, the Dissolution of the Monasteries in England and Wales (1536–1540) by Henry VIII, King of England and Ireland, (r. 1509–1547), and after, her shrine was repeatedly vandalised, and the ultimate disposition of her relics is debated. The present-day Cathedral Church of Christ which is both the chapel of the Oxford college Christ Church, as well as the cathedral of the Church of England Diocese of Oxford is located on the site of St. Frithuswith’s monastery. Though her feast was abolished during the Reformation, it remained on the Oxford University Calendar, and a service attended by University and civic dignitaries is held on, or near, 19th October.
Troparion of St. Frithuswith — Tone V
Come, let us solemnly rejoice today,
and let us laud the virtues and struggles of the most splendid luminary of the Western lands:
Frithuswith, great among ascetics, the most praiseworthy instructor of nuns,
who watcheth over us from her dwelling-place on high;
for the Lord hath truly made her wondrous among His saints.
By her supplications may He save our souls.
LAURA of CÓRDOBA, born in Córdoba, she became a nun at Cuteclara following the death of her husband, eventually becoming Abbess. One of the 48 Martyrs of Córdoba, St. Laura was thrown into a cauldron of molten lead by the Moors in 864.
LUPUS of SOISSONS, a nephew of St. Remigius of Rheims (1st October), St. Lupus served as thirteenth Bishop of Soissons (northern France) from 505 until his repose circa 540.
PTOLEMY of ROME and LUCIUS of ROME, martyred circa 160 in Rome during the reign of the Emperor Antoninus Pius (r. 138–161). St. Ptolemy was put to death for catechising or baptising a woman. Lucius and an unnamed man protested the sentence, and when questioned by the Court, declared themselves to be Christians, and were also martyred. Their martyrdom was recorded by their contemporary, St. Justin the Philosopher (1st June).
THEOFRID (THEOFROY, CHAIFRE), a monk and later Abbot of Calmeliac (present-day Le Monastier-sur-Gazeille, France). St. Theofrid was beaten to death by invading Moors in 728.
VERANUS of CAVAILLON, a Bishop of Cavaillon (south-eastern France) who reposed in 590. He is remembered for his charitable works and patronage of monasteries in his See. St. Gregory of Tours (17th November) related several miracles performed by St. Veranus, including driving out a dragon.
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”.