Western Saints of the Orthodox Church
ALPHIUS, PHILADELPHUS, and CYRINUS, three Sicilian brothers martyred in the Decian Persecution 251. Their cultus has always been particularly strong in the town of Lentini in south-eastern Sicily, of which they are the patron saints.
AURELIAN, (Third Century). The second Bishop of Limoges, and a disciple of his predecessor, St. Martial of Limoges (30th June).
CALEPODIUS, PALMATIUS, SIMPLICIUS, FELIX, BLANDA, and COMPANIONS, a group of over one hundred Christians martyred during the reign of the Emperor Alexander Severus (r. 222-235). St. Calepodius, the first to be martyred, was a priest, St. Simplicius, a senator, SS. Felix and Blanda were husband and wife. Along with them, family members, dependants, and members of their households were martyred as well. It seems they were victims of an angry mob and were not subject to trial before a judge.
CATALD (CATALDUS) of TARANTO, an early seventh century monk at Lismore Abbey in Ireland. There he was a disciple and later successor of St. Carthage (14th May). St. Catald is believed to have been consecrated bishop in Ireland. Though, whilst returning from a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, the people of Taranto in the Apulia region of present-day Italy, implored him to serve as bishop of that See.
COMGALL, St. Comgall was born at Dalaradia (Dál nAraidi), Ulster, Ireland, in the early part of the sixth century. Following a period spent as a soldier, he became a monk under St. Finian (10th September) at Moville Abbey in Co. Down. After ordination to the priesthood, St. Comgall and a group of monks spent some time living a very strict ascetical life on an island in Lough Erne, Ulster.
It was St. Comgall’s wish to go to Scotland as a missionary, but his Bishop gave him the obedience of establishing a monastery at Bangor (Bennchor) in Co. Down. It is commonly accepted that St. Comgall trained over four thousand monks at Bangor, including SS. Columbanus of Luxeuil (23rd November) and Moloc (25th June).
Troparion of St. Comgall – Tone III
Having learned of the goodness of the Grace that comes from the Highest
And girded yourself from your youth in a clear conscience,
O Dionysius, imitator of Christ, you were a pillar of patience
And a preacher of the Word of God,
You confirmed the teachings of the faith and subdued the imaginations of the superstitious,
By so doing you gladly suffered for the truth being an example of suffering.
Since you possess boldness before Christ our God
Do not cease to pray for us, who in love revere your holy memory.
The success of Bangor was extraordinary; to this day St. Comgall is referred to as “the Father of Monks”. It was said that he often prayed whilst standing in the water for several hours and that at times his cell seemed to be illuminated with a heavenly radiance. Eventually St. Comgall was able to follow his earlier wish to visit Scotland where he became close friends with St. Columba of Iona (9th June), by whose prayers St. Comgall was once saved from drowning. St. Comgall lived to an advanced age, and after a prolonged illness, he received Holy Communion from St. Fiacre (30th August), and reposed at Bangor on 10th May, 602.
QUARTUS and QUINTUS, (Date Unknown), two martyrs in Rome, whose relics were translated to their native town of Capua in Campania, where they were enshrined.
SOLANGIA (SOLANGE), a young maiden shepherdess in the Bourges area of present-day France. St. Solangia was martyred defending her virginity against the advances of a young nobleman from the area circa 880.
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”.