Western Saints of the Orthodox Church
ABUNDIUS, ABUNDANTIUS, MARCIAN, and JOHN, according to tradition SS. Abundius (a priest) and Abundantius (his deacon) had been condemned to death during the Diocletianic Persecution. On their way to execution they met St. Marcian, who was on his way to bury his recently deceased son St. John. St. Abundius prayed over St. John, raising him from the dead. This miracle caused both SS. Marcian and John to embrace Christianity, and they were immediately baptised. All four were subsequently beheaded circa 303. Marcian is one of the 140 Colonnade saints which adorn St. Peter's Square.
CORNELIUS, the twenty-first Pope of Rome (251 – 253). The leading issues of his papacy were how the Church should respond to those who apostatised during persecution, but wished to return to the Church, and the Novatian Schism. Pope St. Cornelius was exiled (circa 252) to Centumcellae (present-day Civitavecchia north-west of Rome), where he reposed 253. Early records state he died from the hardships experienced in his exile, however, later sources claim he was beheaded.
CUNIBERT, the ninth Bishop of Cologne from 627 until his repose 663. Prior to his elevation to the episcopacy St. Cunibert served as Archdeacon of Trier.
CYPRIAN, born in North Africa, Thascius Cecilianus Cyprianus was a lawyer who was converted to Christianity at about the age of forty-six. Two years after his baptism, St. Cyprian was ordained to the priesthood, and shortly thereafter consecrated Bishop of Carthage (248). St. Cyprian was an important figure on the side of Pope St. Cornelius ( vide supra) during the Novatian Schism. A prolific author, St. Cyprian wrote a myriad of theological treatises, De Unitate Catholicae Ecclesiae undoubtedly being the most important of his works. One of the greatest of the Church Fathers, St. Cyprian was known for his compassion and fervour as a pastor. He was forced into hiding during the Decian Persecution but was later found and beheaded (258).
DULCISSIMA, (Date Unknown), a virgin-martyr of whom nothing is known beyond her being patron saint of Sutri in present-day Italy.
Troparion of St. Edith of Wilton — Tone IV
Thou didst love Christ from thy youth, O blessed one, and ardently
desiring to labour for Him alone, thou didst struggle in asceticism in
the royal convent at Wilton. And having acquired humility of soul
and spiritual stillness, thou didst pass over to the mansions of
paradise, where thou dost intercede for us O venerable mother Edith.
EDITH of WILTON, St. Edith of Wilton was the daughter of King St. Edgar the Peaceful (8th July) and St. Wilfrida (13th September). She received monastic tonsure at Wilton at the age of fifteen and devoted her life to the care of the sick and the poor. Though it was offered many times, she refused the position of abbess. Her repose, foretold by St. Dunstan (19th May), occurred at the early age of twenty-three (984) and she was buried at Wilton in the new church of St. Denis. Eleventh century monk and hagiographer Goscelin of Canterbury wrote that about thirteen years after her repose St. Edith is said to have appeared to several people to enjoin them to exhume her incorrupt relics. This was done, and her relics were found to be incorrupt. Her relics were reinterred, though her thumb was enshrined separately and became an important relic. Goscelin went on to tell how King Canute encountered a terrible storm whilst crossing from England to Denmark; he sought St. Edith’s intercession and the storm calmed. Upon his return to England, King Canute made a pilgrimage to Wilton to give thanks and commanded that a golden shrine to St. Edith be erected there. Allusions to numerous other, but unspecified, miracles are credited to St. Edith in various hagiographies, and a considerable number of churches throughout England are dedicated to her.
EUGENIA, daughter of Adalbert, Duke of Alsace, and the successor of her aunt, St. Odilia (13th December), as Abbess of Hohenburg (Abbaye de Hohenbourg) on Mont Sainte-Odile in present-day Alsace France. St. Eugenia reposed 735.
LUCY and GEMINIAN, (Late Third Century), these saints have been venerated as martyrs of the Diocletianic Persecution since ancient times. However, all that is known of them is from pious legend. It is highly likely that this St. Lucy is the same as St. Lucy of Syracuse (13th December), and St. Geminian a fictional character.
LUDMILLA, a Bohemian princess and grandmother of St. Wenceslas (28th September), following the untimely repose of her husband, St. Ludmilla led an austere, pious life and continued to be concerned for the Church. However, following the death of her son and successor of her husband, her daughter-in-law, Dragomira, sought to use her influence over the young and inexperienced St. Wenceslas to re-introduce pagan customs back into the country. This, naturally, was met with opposition by St. Ludmilla, and Dragomira eventually sent two assassins to murder her, which they did, whilst St. Ludmilla was at prayer in her home in Techin, 921. Her relics were initially buried at Techin in the city wall, and numerous healings occurred at her grave, St. Wenceslas, later had her relics translated to church of St. George in Prague.
ROGELIUS and SERVUS-DEI, St. Rogelius a monk, and St. Servus-Dei, his spiritual child, and possible Cell Attendant, were martyred in Córdoba (852) for publicly denouncing Islam (the official charge being blasphemy). They were the first martyrs under the Emir Muhammad I of Córdoba and are counted amongst the forty-eight Christians known as the Martyrs of Cordoba.
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”.