Pre-Schism Orthodox Western Saints
2nd November (NS) — 20th October (OS) 2019
ACCA of HEXHAM, known as one of the most learned bishops of his century, he was held in great esteem by St. Bede the Venerable (25th May) who described him as ‘great in the sight of God and man’. St. Acca began his monastic life as a disciple of SS. Bosa of York (9th March) and Wilfrid of York (12th October). During St. Wilfrid’s exile (circa 678–681), St. Acca served as a travelling companion to St. Wilfrid. Following their return to England, St. Acca served as Abbot of St. Andrew’s in Hexham (Northumberland), and in 709, succeeded his former master as Bishop of Hexham, serving that See until his repose circa 740.
ADERALD, the Archdeacon of Troyes (north-central France) who went lead a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Returning with a surfeit of holy relics, he built the Priory of Saint-Sépulcre at Samblières (present-day Villacerf) on the outskirts of Troyes. St. Aderald reposed in 1004.
AIDAN of MAYO, a bishop in Co. Mayo, Ireland who reposed in 768, and of whom nothing further is known.
BERNARD of BAGNOREA, a native of Bagnorea, Lazio (central Italy) who served as Bishop of Vulcia in Tuscany (central Italy) in the late eighth century. St. Bernard reposed circa 800.
BRADAN and ORORA (CRORA), (Date Uncertain), nothing is known about SS. Bradan and Orora other than the existence of a Kirk Braddan (Church of St. Braddan) near Douglas, Isle of Man, and a reference made on a sixteenth century map to a church of St. Crora. There is also a tradition of their veneration on the Isle of Man.
CAPRASIUS of AGEN, a native of Agen in Aquitaine (south-western France), St. Caprasius initially went into hiding at the beginning of the Diocletianic Persecution (303–313). However, inspired by the courage shown by St. Foy of Conques (6th October), St. Caprasius came out of hiding, and openly proclaimed himself to be a Christian, and was subsequently beheaded in 303.
IRENE of TOMAR, a nun in Portugal, of whom nothing certain can be said with confidence. She is said to have been martyred by Visigoths circa 653. She is the patron saint of both Tomar and Santarém in Portugal.
MARTHA of COLOGNE, SAULA of COLOGNE, and COMPANIONS, (Fourth Century), martyrs with St. Ursula (21st October) in Cologne in the present-day German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.
MAXIMUS of AQUILA, a very devout and dedicated deacon in Aquila in the Abruzzo region of present-day Italy. He was tortured and then martyred by being thrown off a cliff circa 250, during the Decian Persecution (250–251). St. Maximus is one of the patron saints of L’Aquila Italy.
SINDULF of REIMS, a hermit in Aussonce near Reims (north-eastern France), who reposed in 660.
VITALIS of SALZBURG, Abbot of St. Peter’s Abbey (Stift Sankt Peter), and second Bishop of Salzburg. St. Vitalis succeeded St. Rupert of Salzburg (27th March) in both positions in 717 and continued until his repose in 745.
AMBROSE of AGAUNE, two monks both named Ambrose, who served as Abbots of the Abbey of St. Maurice (abbaye de Saint-Maurice d'Agaune) in present-day Saint-Maurice-en-Valais, Switzerland. The first St. Ambrose's repose has been listed as both 516 and 523, and the second in 582.
AMICUS of FONTE AVELLANA, a priest, hermit, and monk at the Venerable Hermitage of the Holy Cross (Monastero di Fonte Avellana) in present-day Serra Sant'Abbondio in the Marche region of central Italy. St. Amicus reposed circa 1045.
BAYA of SCOTLAND and MAURA of SCOTLAND, (Tenth Century), St. Baya was an anchoress on the Isle of Cumbrae in the Firth of Clyde in western Scotland. Her fellow anchoress and disciple, St. Maura lived at Killmaur in Ayrshire. In time, a community of monastics grew around St. Maura and she served as its abbess. It is possible that St. Baya is the same person as St. Bega (6th September).
DOMNINUS of GRENOBLE, (Late Fourth Century), the first historically verifiable Bishop of Grenoble (south-eastern France). St. Domninus was one of the thirty-two bishops in attendance at the Council of Aquileia in 381.
ERC (ERTH, HERYGH, URITH), (in Cornwall 31st October), St. Erc mac Dega (Latin: Ercus; Cornish: Erth) is believed to have been a pagan druid converted by St. Patrick of Ireland (17th March), who later consecrated him first Bishop of Slane, Co. Meath, Ireland. According to tradition, St. Erc founded the original Abbey on the Hill of Slane as well as the school at Slane Abbey, where St. Dagobert II, King of Austrasia (France) (r. 675–679) (23rd December) is believed to have received part of his early education. St. Erc was also a friend and tutor of St. Brendan the Voyager (16th May).
Around 450 St. Erc was chosen by St. Patrick to continue St. Benignus of Armagh's (9th November) evangelisation of Co. Kerry, when the later was sent to Northern Co. Clare and the present-day Province of Connaught. Initially St. Erc's jurisdiction appears to have included a large part of south-west Co. Limerick, including the monastery of St. Ita of Killeedy (15th January) at Killeedy. Shortly before his repose, St. Patrick expanded the area over which St. Erc was responsible to include Co. Cork, thereby placing most, if not all, of the area that comprises present-day Province of Munster under St. Erc’s supervision.
St. Erth of Cornwall is generally believed to be the same man as St. Erc. Brother of SS. Unni of Bremen (17th September) and Ia of Cornwall (3rd February), he is thought to have crossed from Ireland to Cornwall, where a church and the village of St. Erth are dedicated to him. This is based upon local tradition, supported only by fifteenth-century English chronicler and antiquary, William of Worcester (†c. 1482): “Saint Herygh, the brother of Saint Uny, a bishop, lies in a certain church situated under the cross of the church of St. Paul in London; his day is kept on the vigil of All Saints, that is, the last day of October ... Saint Hya ... the sister of Saint Herygh ...” Herygh is an incorrect corruption of St. Erc’s name, and the reference to St. Paul’s is undoubtedly the result of confusing St. Erc with St. Erconwald of London (30th April).
St. Erc spent the last years of his life in prayer and solitude at a hermitage in Slane. According to the Annals of Ulster, St. Erc reposed on 2nd November 512. His feast is kept on 2nd November in Ireland and on the calendar of the Moscow Patriarchate, and on 31st October in Cornwall.
Troparion of St. Erc (Ireland)
Even in the darkness of heathendom/
thou didst recognize the God-given authority of Ireland's Enlightener, O Hierarch Erc,/
and wast baptized at his hands./
Wherefore we beseech thee, pray to Christ our God/
that being blessed with the virtue of humility/ we may be found worthy of eternal salvation.
Troparion of St. Erc (Cornwall)
For four score years and ten thou didst grace the Cornish land/
with thy godly presence, O Father Herygh./
Therefore pray to God for us that we may devote every year of our lives to His service,/
that at the end we may be found worthy of eternal salvation.
GEORGE of VIENNE, a late seventh or early eighth century Bishop of Vienne (south-eastern France).
JUSTUS of TRIESTE, a citizen of Trieste (north-eastern Italy), St. Justus was arrested for being a Christian during the Diocletianic Persecution (303–313). Even when subjected to torture he still refused to renounce Christ and so was weighted down and thrown into the sea where he drowned.
PUBLIUS of NORTH AFRICA, VICTOR of NORTH AFRICA, HERMES of NORTH AFRICA and PAPIAS of NORTH AFRICA, (Date Unknown), martyrs in North Africa of whom the only information extant is their names.
VICTORINUS of PETTAU, a Bishop of Pettau in Styria (Steiermark in present-day Austria). According to the Martyrologium Hieronymianum, St. Victorinus was the first theologian to use Latin for his exegesis. Though it appears he was a prodigious writer, only an extremely limited selection of his work survives to the present. St. Victorinus was martyred during the Diocletianic Persecution (303–313).
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”.