St. Patrick Catholic Church
Saint of the Day
 

October 27

Abban of Wexford, Abbot (AC)
Born in Ireland, 6th century. Saint Abban, nephew of Saint Kevin, founded many monasteries, mostly in southern Ireland. His name is especially connected with that of Magh-Armuidhe, now Adamstown, Wexford. The lives of this saint are hopelessly confused with that of Saint Abban of Leinster and others of the same name (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).


Abraham the Child, Hermit (RM)
(also known as Abraham the Poor)

Born at Menuf, Egypt; died 366-377; feast day formerly on March 16. Abraham became a disciple of Saint Pachomius. After 23 years he retired to a cave where he spent 17 years. His cultus is widespread among the Copts (Benedictines, Encyclopedia). Abraham is shown as an old man with a blowing beard clothed in skins. Sometimes he is in his cell with his niece Mary in the adjoining cell (Roeder).


Blessed Antonia of Brescia, OP V (PC)
Born 1407; died 1507. Although Antonia entered the Dominican convent at Brescia as a young girl, she was not chosen prioress until she was 66. She governed Saint Catherine's Convent at Ferrara, Italy, rigorously but with justice. She underwent deposition and other trials with patience and humility (Benedictines).


Capitolina and Erotheis MM (RM)
Died 304. Capitolina, a wealthy Cappadocian lady, and her handmaid, were martyred under Diocletian, after Capitolina distributed her entire wealth to the poor (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).


Colman of Senboth-Fola, Abbot (AC)
Born in Ireland; died c. 632. Abbot Saint Colman of Senboth-Fola, in the diocese of Ferns, was associated with Bishop Saint Maidoc of Ferns (January 31) (Benedictines).


Cyriacus of Constantinople B (AC)
Died 606; feast day in the Greek Church is celebrated on October 29. Cyriacus was administrator and, later, patriarch of Constantinople (Benedictines).


Desiderius of Auxerre B (AC)
Died c. 625. Saint Desiderius succeeded Saint Aunarius (Aunaire) in the see of Auxerre, France. He has often been confused with Saint Desiderius of Vienne (Benedictines).


Florentius of Burgundy M (RM)
3rd century. Saint Florentius suffered martyrdom at Trois- Châteaux in Burgundy (Benedictines).


Frumentius of Ethiopia B (RM)
(also known as Fremonat)

Died c. 380. According to their contemporary Rufinus, two young Christian brothers named Frumentius and Aedesius (Aedisius) were studying philosophy in Tyre under Meropius (or Metrodorus), who decided around the year 330 that he would like to take a voyage along the coasts of Arabia. To the young men's overwhelming delight, he offered to take them with him.

The journey went well, but on their homeward trip the ship docked at Adulis, Abyssinia (Ethiopia), to take on fresh supplies. The sailors got into a fight with the locals, leading to the murder of Meropius and everyone on ship. The boys escaped because they were studying their lessons under a tree a distance from the ship. When they were discovered, they were taken as slaves to the court of the king of Aksum (Axum) in Tigre.

The king was impressed by their bearing and learning and the fortunes of the young Christians prospered. Frumentius, the elder brother, was made the king's chief secretary. Aedesius became his cup-bearer. They gained permission even for Greek merchants to open some churches in Ethiopia and to try to convert the people. And when the king died, he gave the two men their freedom. They remained for a time at the request of the widowed queen to help rule the country.

Eventually the two princes, named Abreha and Asbeha, came to the throne. The Tyrian brothers resigned their posts although their new king urged them to stay. Aedesius returned to Tyre where he was ordained and met Rufinus, who incorporated their story into his Church History.

Frumentius, desiring to convert the whole of his adopted country, made his way to Alexandria and explained the Ethiopian situation to Saint Athanasius. He urgently asked Athanasius to send a bishop to Aksum to consolidate all that had been done there for Christ. Either Athanasius or a synod unanimously chose Frumentius for the work, ordained him bishop, and sent him back to plant the Christian church in Ethiopia, which he did in Aksum.

"Apostolic signs accompanied his ministry, and great numbers of heathen were won to the faith" (Rufinus). Among those converted were Abreha and Asbeha, the two royal brothers, despite the attempts of the Arian Emperor Constantius to discredit him because of his connection with Athanasius.

Whatever the exact details of the Tyrian youths' adventures, there is strong confirmation of the presence in Ethiopia of a bishop named Frumentius, consecrated by Saint Athanasius about the middle of the fourth century.

After his death the Abyssinians dubbed him Abuna (which means 'Our Father') and Aba salama (which means 'Father of peace'). Abuna is still the title of the primate of the Church of Ethiopia (Attwater, Bentley, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Walsh).

In art Frumentius is represented as a bishop elevating a Host, sometimes with Saint Athanasius, sometimes shipwrecked with his brother Saint Aedesius. Saint Frumentius is venerated as the first evangelizer of Ethiopia (Roeder).


Gaudiosus of Naples B (RM)
(also known as Gaudiosus the African)

Died c. 455. Saint Gaudiosus, bishop of Abitina in northern Africa, was exiled by the Arian Vandal king Genseric about 440. He took refuge at Naples where he founded a monastery, which was later governed by Saint Agnellus (Benedictines).


Blessed Goswin of Chemnion, OSB Cist. (AC)
Died 1203. Goswin was a Cistercian monk, first at Clairvaux and then at Chemnion (Benedictines).


Namatius of Clermont B (AC)
(also known as Namace)

Died after 462. Saint Namatius, ninth bishop of Clermont, France, built the cathedral there (Benedictines).


Otteran of Iona, Abbot (RM)
(also known as Odhran, Oran)

Born in Britain; died c. 563. Otteran, abbot of Meath, was one of the 12 who accompanied Saint Columba to Iona. Other historians say that Otteran was at Iona before Columba, based on the fact that the ancient cemetery there is called Reilig Oran. He died soon after their arrival, the first of the monks from Ireland to die at Iona. Soon thereafter, Columba saw Otteran's soul ascending to heaven following a battle between angels and devils. Otteran may have founded the monastery at Leitrioch Odrain (Latteragh, Tipperary). He has given his name to Oronsay. His feast is kept throughout Ireland (Benedictines, Delaney, Farmer, Montague).


Vincent, Sabina & Christeta MM (RM)
Died 303. Untrustworthy acta record that Vincent was a young Christian in Ávila, Spain, when Governor Dacian ordered the suppression of all Christians during the break up of the Roman Empire. Today there are some countries where the Christians are so inoffensive that nobody bothers with them, and there are other countries where they are persecuted because they are true Christians. We should ask ourselves which of the two most deserves our pity.

Vincent's crime was his freedom and independence. He felt that he was in the right, and so risked upsetting all the old traditional obsolete beliefs. He was dangerous, but he was right to be dangerous as are all other Christians of every place and every age.

They tried to set him on the "right" path: the path of apathy, tradition, numbness, and idolatry. But in his eyes Jupiter was a scoundrel deserving blows, not worship. He preferred the man who had been crucified in Jerusalem and, brushing away the dust and mold of the old religion, he let in the fresh air of the new. And even if the particular details of Vincent's story are not absolutely authentic, his story is true in a wider sense, for the powerful empire was crumbling and the new light of Christianity was inspiring Vincent and many others--feebly at first but shining ever more brightly.

Vincent was condemned to death. We know from legends what happened to him, but not what happened inside him, for only he and Jesus Christ know that. It is the most essential part of a person's life, and yet one which is only rarely mentioned by historians, critics, or writers. We cannot blame them, for no one on earth can tell you about your life with Jesus Christ, and that is as it should be. Therefore what we have to say about a person is relatively unimportant; and if none of the things which are recorded of Vincent ever actually happened, that would in no way alter the essential and only truth, which is his life with Jesus Christ.

It is said that Vincent left the imprint of his foot on a stone and that was enough to convert his guards. His guards, however, were no more simple-minded than we are, and if they were converted it was because they saw more in Vincent than a foot which could leave its imprint on a stone: it was because they saw in him the imprint of Jesus Christ. Wherever Vincent went he left the imprint of Jesus, his "odor" as the old books used to call it. There are few of us today who leave an imprint likely to inspire those around us to convert. Dacian has nothing to worry about and can stay at home.

For a while everything went well for Vincent. His guards were converted and with the help of his sisters Sabina and Christeta he was able to escape. But Christ is not especially fond of those who win too easily. They had barely arrived at Alba when all three were arrested. They were scourged, beaten, quartered, and crushed between stones. This time they left no imprint on the stones, but an enormous imprint on the whole of Spain (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

In art they are identified as a man and two women broken on wheels. They are venerated at Ávila, Spain, where they were martyred (Roeder).



About Saints of the Day
These summaries were prepared in 1998 by St. Patrick's parishioner Katherine I. Rabenstein and are reproduced on www.saintpatrickdc.org with the permission of the author. Note that the content has not been updated since that time and represents the research of the author. An alphabetical index of all saints on our site is available. Source references are also available. HTML formatting © 2007-2008 by St. Patrick's Catholic Church, Washington, D.C.