Pre-Schism Orthodox Western Saints
23rd April (NS) — 10th April (OS)
10th April O.S.
BEDE the YOUNGER, a high-ranking courtier in the Court of King Charles the Bald, who left the world and received monastic tonsure at a monastery in Gavello, approximately 60 km / 37 mi southwest of Venice. Several times St. Bede was offered a bishopric, and each time he refused. St. Bede reposed in 883.
BEOCCA, ETHOR, and COMPANIONS, the sack of England, and in particular the monasteries, by the Danes claimed many lives including SS. Hedda, Theodore and Companions (9th April). To the number of martyrs, we must add SS. Beocca, Abbot; Ethora, hieromonk, and some ninety monks at Chertsey in Surrey 869.
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”.
MACARIUS of ANTIOCH, an Archbishop of Antioch who resigned his See, and following a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, set off to enlighten pagans in the west. Travelling up through Dalmatia, and Bavaria, and earning a reputation as a wonderworker along the way, St. Macarius finally settled in Ghent at the Abbey of St. Bavo. He remained there for the rest of his life, reposing there in 1012.
MARTYRS of OSTIA, a group of criminals who were baptised by Pope St. Alexander I (3rd May) during his imprisonment. They were martyred by drowning after being taken to Ostia near Rome and put on board a boat which was then sunk at sea circa 115. Some sources list them as Martyrs of Rome.
PALLADIUS, an Abbot of the Abbey of St. Germanus in Auxerre, he went on to serve as Bishop of Auxerre, and was the founder of several monasteries. St. Palladius reposed in 661.
TERENCE, AFRICANUS, POMPEIUS, and COMPANIONS, a group of fifty Christians who, during the Decian Persecution, were tortured by imprisonment with snakes and scorpions, before being martyred by beheading in Carthage, Africa Proconsularis, 250.
23rd April N.S.
ADALBERT (VOITECH), a Bohemian noble who was converted and educated by St. Adalbert of Magdeburg (20th June), whose name he later took. Consecrated Bishop of Prague in 982, St. Adalbert was forced to flee his See a few years later due to opposition from the local nobles. He went to Rome where he stayed at the Abbey of St. Boniface, and whilst there received monastic tonsure. St. Adalbert was sent back to his See by the Pope John XV, and once again he was forced to flee. He appealed to Pope John and was given a blessing to evangelize in Pomerania, Poland, Prussia, Hungary, and Russia, which proved to be fruitless. St. Adalbert along with his missionaries were martyred near Danzig (present-day Gdansk, Poland) in 997.
FELIX, FORTUNATUS and ACHILLEUS, a priest, and two deacons sent by St. Irenaeus of Lyons (28th June) to enlighten the area around Vienne. There they were captured and subjected to numerous horrific tortures, and finally martyred in 212.
GERARD of TOUL, a native of Cologne and member of the nobility who after witnessing his mother struck dead by lightning dedicated his life to prayer and penance. St. Gerard was consecrated Bishop of Toul in 963. As bishop, he defended his diocese from secular interference, rebuilt the Cathedral (though the current Cathedral dates from 1447), and established monasteries with schools attached staffed by Greek and Irish monks. St. Gerard reposed in 994.
IBAR (IBERIUS, IVOR), (Fifth Century), one of the missionaries (along with SS. Cearan (14th June), Ailbe (12th September), and Déclán (24th July) who are considered by many to have preceded St. Patrick (17th March) in the conversion of Ireland, though others believe that St. Patrick (17th March) ordained him. St. Ibar strived to spread the Gospel in Leinster and Meath, and built a monastery at Begerin which attracted many monks, including his nephew St. Abban (16th March). In his Litany, St. Ængus (11th March) invokes the “Three thousand confessors” who assembled themselves under St. Ibar’s rule. He is believed to have reposed circa 500, and his relics were enshrined at the monastery at Bergerin.
MAROLUS, of Syrian birth, St. Marolus moved to Rome in early adulthood. There he became good friends with Pope St. Innocent I (28th July), and in 408 was consecrated Bishop of Milan. St. Marolus served his See until his repose in 423.
PUSINNA, (Fifth Century), a maiden who spent many years living as a hermitess in her parent’s house in Binson, Chalons-en-Champagne where she and her six sisters formed a religious community.