Pre-Schism Orthodox Western Saints
5th November (NS) — 23rd October (OS)
23rd October O.S.
AMO (AMON), nothing is known of St. Amo except for his name and that he was the second Bishop of Toul from circa 375, until his repose circa 400–425.
BENEDICT of SEBASTE, traditionally said to have been a Bishop of Sebaste, though the Bollandists, have questioned this, additionally he is not listed as a bishop in commemorations of the Roman Catholic Church. St. Benedict is said to have been forced to flee his See of Sebaste in the Holy Land by Julian the Apostate, and was given refuge in Gaul by St. Hilary of Poitiers (13th January) who gave him land on which to build a hermitage, which later became the Abbey of Saint Benedict of Quincay. St. Benedict reposed circa 654.
CLETHER (CLEER, CLYDOG, SCLEDOG, CLITANUS, CLEODIUS), what we know of St. Clether's life is mainly based upon pious tradition. It is believed he was a descendant of King St. Brychan of Brycheiniog (6th April), and is said to have been a disciple of St. Brynach (7th April). There are several churches in Cornwall, and the civil parish and village of St. Cleer commemorate him, and the village of Clodock in Herefordshire is named for him. St. Clether is thought to have reposed circa 520. The Moscow Patriarchate’s calendar commemorates him on 4th November as St. Clether, hermit of Cornwall.
DOMITIUS, an eighth century priest or deacon in the Diocese of Amiens who lived as a hermit. St. Domitius is also said by some to have been the Spiritual Father of St. Ulphia of Amiens (31st January).
ELFLEDA (ÆLFLEAD), this St. Elfleda was an Anglo-Saxon princess who lived as an anchoress at Glastonbury. She was greatly admired by St. Dunstan (19th May), to whom she prophesied the year and day of her repose, which took place in the mid-tenth century. She is not to be confused with the following St. Elfleda, her contemporary and namesake, who was Abbess of Romsey.
ETHELFLEDA (ELFLEDA), the existence of several St. Elfledas and the paucity of available information, which is muddled at best, makes it difficult to provide accurate information on the life of this saint. From Baring-Gould we learn that this St. Elfleda is believed to have been the daughter of Earl Ethelwold, who died soon after her birth, and after her mother remarried St. Elfleda was neglected. Her father's close friend, King Edgar, taking pity on her, sent St. Elfleda to Romsey Abbey to be educated. In time St. Elfleda received monastic tonsure, and soon came to be known for the sanctity of her life and feats of asceticism. It is related that once, when St. Elfleda was reading the Lesson at Matins, the wind kept extinguishing her candle, so she held her hand up and light streamed forth, providing the necessary illumination for her. She was also known for chanting Psalms whilst standing naked in the River Test at night. St. Elfleda served as Abbess of Romsey for the last few years of her life, reposing in the late tenth century.
JOHN of SYRACUSE, Bishop of Syracuse in Sicily from 595 until his repose circa 609.
LEOTHADIUS (LÉOTHADE), a Frankish noble who received monastic tonsure at the Abbey of Saint-Pierre de Moissac in the Duchy of Aquitaine, later serving as its Abbot. In 691, St. Leothadius was consecrated Bishop of Auch, serving until his repose in 718. St. Leothadius's relics are enshrined in the crypt of the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Mary of Auch.
ODA, a Frankish princess and widow of the Duke of Aquitaine. Following the repose of her husband, St. Oda dedicated her life and wealth to the care of the poor and suffering. She reposed circa 723, her shrine is in Amay, near Liege in present-day Belgium.
ROMANUS of ROUEN, a courtier to King Chlotar II (r. 613–629) who was consecrated the twentieth Bishop of Rouen circa 629. During the decade or so of his episcopacy, St. Romanus, worked to eradicate the last vestiges of paganism in his See. Awonderworker, St Romanus also devoted much of his time to caring for prisoners, especially those with capital sentences. St. Romanus reposed in 639.
SERVANDUS and GERMANUS (MARTYRS of CADIZ), brothers martyred during the Diocletianic Persecution in the early fourth century.
SEVERINUS (SEURIN) of BORDEAUX, often confused with his contemporary and native of Bordeaux, St. Severinus of Cologne (vide infra). This St. Severinus, was "from the East" according to St. Gregory of Tours, and served as the fourth Bishop of Bordeaux from circa 405 until his repose in 420. He is remembered for his wonderworking, and fierce opposition to Arianism.
SEVERINUS BOETHIUS, the statesman, philosopher, and martyr, Anicius Manlius Torquatus Severinus Boethius was a member of a Roman Consular family. St. Severinus served as a Consul, as did his father and sons, and later he also was an aide and advisor to Theodoric the Great, King of the Ostrogoths (r. 475–526). Though the author of several theological treatises, St. Severinus is best remembered for his more secular works, especially the De Consolatione Philosophiæ. About the year 534 political rivals accused him of disloyalty to the throne, and republican leanings, St. Severinus was gaoled, and without trial Theodoric ordered that he be put to death. Though there is no documentary evidence to support it, St. Severinus has always been considered a martyr, with a very strong cultus around Pavia where his execution took place. St. Severinus' relics are enshrined in the Cathedral of Santo Stefano e di Santa Maria del Popolo in Pavia, Italy.
SEVERINUS of COLOGNE, a native of Bordeaux often confused with his namesake and contemporary St. Severinus of Bordeaux (vide supra). St. Severinus was the third reliably documented Bishop of Cologne (circa 348–403). The little that is known of him is conflated with St. Severinus of Bordeaux, though his ardent stance against Arianism is well documented. St. Severinus reposed circa 403.
SYRE (SYRA), a spiritual daughter of St. Burgundofara (3rd April) at the Abbey of Our Lady of Faremoutiers. St. Syre was later chosen to be abbess of an abbey at Châlons-sur-Marne (present-day Châlons-en-Champagne, Marne, in north-eastern France). St. Syre reposed circa 660.
VERUS, (Fourth Century), a wonderworker, St. Verus was the third Bishop of Salerno. He is remembered for his zealous defence of orthodox Christianity.
5th November N.S.
AUGUSTINE and PAULINUS, (Sixth Century), two monks whom St. Benedict (11th July) charged with the founding of a monastery at Terracina in present-day Latina, Italy.
BERTILLA, St. Bertilla received monastic tonsure at the Abbey of Our Lady of Jouarre, and later served as the first Abbess of the re-founded Abbey of Our Lady of Chelles. She served as abbess for close to half a century, until her repose circa 703.
DOMINATOR, Bishop of Brescia in Lombardy. St. Dominator reposed circa 495.
FELIX and EUSEBIUS, two first century martyrs at Terracina, a town approximately 56 km / 35 mi south-east of Rome on the Via Appia.
FIBITIUS, there are no verifiable details of St. Fibitius extant. Some sources list him as the abbot of an unnamed monastery in Trier, others as Bishop of Trier. St. Fibitius reposed circa 500.
HERMENEGILD, a monk at an abbey in Salcedo in Spanish Galatia. St. Hermenegild assisted St. Rudesind (1st March) building abbeys and monasteries throughout Galatia. He reposed in 586.
KANTEN (CANNEN), (Eighth Century), the founder of Lianganten in Powys in Wales. There is no further information on his life extant.
KEA (KAY, KENAN), (Sixth Century), what is known of St. Kea's life is from a seventeenth-century précis of a now lost Latin hagiography, and an incomplete sixteenth-century Cornish language play that was lost until 2000. Hence any details of his life should be viewed with scepticism.
The extant documents relate that St. Kea was the son of King Lleuddun Luyddog of Lothian and was a bishop in north Britain before becoming a hermit. Traveling first to Wales, St. Kea then headed south, founding churches at Street, Somerset, and Landkey, Devon. St. Kea finally settled at what is today Kea in Cornwall, which takes its name from him. He is also believed to have spent some time in Brittany, where he is venerated as St. Quay, and may have reposed there.
Troparion of St. Kea — Tone I
Thou wast unsparing in thy missionary labours/
in Brittany and Cornwall, O Hierarch Kea./
As thou didst make the flame of the Orthodox Faith/
burn brightly in the face of defiant paganism,/
pray to God for us, that we devote our lives to confronting the paganism of our times/
for the glory of Christ's Kingdom and the salvation of men's souls.
LAETUS, based upon pious legend, St. Laetus received monastic tonsure at the age of twelve at an unknown monastery in the area of Orléans France. He reposed circa 533, and relics were enshrined at Saint-Lyé-la-Forêt, which takes its name from him
MAGNUS, Archbishop of Milan from circa 520 until his repose in 525. The Roman Martyrology calls him a confessor, other than that there is little known of St. Magnus.
SPINULUS (SPINULA, SPIN), a disciple of St. Hidulf (11th July) at the Abbey of Moyenmoutier (64 km / 40 mi south-west of Strasbourg). St. Spinulus reposed in either 707 or 720.
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”.