Western Saints of the Orthodox Church
ALEXANDER of SABINE, HYACINTH, and TIBURTIUS, (Date Unknown), martyrs in the Sabine Hills in present-day Italy of whom nothing further is known.
BETTELIN (BERTRAM), St. Bettelin, a disciple of St. Guthlac of Crowland (11th April), lived at Crowland Abbey as a hermit under Abbot Kenulf. Information about his life is often confused and intertwined with that of St. Bettelin of Staffordshire (10th August). Many sources believe them to be the same saint. There is no means of fixing the precise date of his repose, but it is generally accepted that St. Bettelin of Crowland reposed in the eighth century. His relics were translated to Staffordshire before the destruction of Crowland Abbey by the Danes.
CIARÁN mac int SHAÍR mac (KIERAN the YOUNGER), known as the Younger to distinguish him from St. Ciarán of Saighir (5th March), this St. Ciarán was born in the province of Connaught in the west of Ireland. He received monastic tonsure at Clonard Abbey where he was a disciple of St. Finnian of Clonard (12th December), who prophesied that half the monasteries in Ireland would receive their Rule from him. The Law of Kieran, like the monastic Rules of the other great Celtic saints, is austere in the extreme. St. Ciarán founded several monasteries, including the famous Clonmacnoise in West Meath on the River Shannon. St. Ciarán reposed circa 549, and is counted amongst the ‘Twelve Apostles of Ireland’.
OMER (AUDOMARUS), a native of north-eastern Switzerland near Lake Constance. Following the repose of his mother, St. Omer and his father received monastic tonsure at the Abbey of SS. Peter and Paul of Luxeuil (abbaye Saint-Pierre et Saint-Paul de Luxeuil) in Burgundy (east-central France). As a spiritual child of St. Eustace of Luxeuil (29th March) St. Omer developed a reputation for holiness and a remarkable knowledge of Scripture. When a bishop was needed for the See of Thérouanne in the northern French county of Artois, St. Omer was chosen. As bishop he built the Abbey of St. Peter / abbaye Saint-Pierre (later the Abbey of St. Berin / abbaye Saint-Bertin de Saint-Omer) in Sithiu (present-day Saint-Omer, France), suppressed idolatry, and rejuvenated the diocese into one of the most thriving in all of France. St. Omer reposed circa 670.
OSMANNA (ARGARIARGA), a maiden from Ireland who went to Brittany (north-western France), where she lived as an anchoress near Saint-Brieuc, reposing circa 650.
WULFHILD (WULFHILDA, WULFHILDIS), St. Wulfhild was most likely a member of the Anglo-Saxon nobility, and was raised at Wilton Abbey in Wiltshire, England. She desired to enter monastic life; however, she was ardently pursued by St. Edgar the Peaceful (8th July), King of England (r. 957–975) for betrothal. After repeatedly rebuffing his proposals, St. Wulfhid was able to obtain King St. Edgar’s permission to receive monastic tonsure, and eventually served simultaneously as Abbess of both Barking Abbey in present-day London, and Horton Abbey in Kent. St. Wulfhild reposed circa 1000.
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”.