Tuscan by birth, Pope/St. Martin was elected to the papal throne in 649. He had been a reader and a deacon before his election, and he was crowned without the consent of Emperor Constans II. Shortly after being elected, Martin convoked a synod at the Lateran to condemn monothelitism; the synod defied an order from the emperor to discuss the issue. Constans sent Olympius, the exarch of Ravenna, to bring the pope to Constantinople for trial. Olympius failed, and in 653, Theodore Collipas, the new exarch, invaded Rome and imprisoned the pope, who spent a year under guard on Naxos. When the party reached Constantinople in 654, Martin was charged with treason and condemned to death. Patriarch Paul II intervened on the pope's behalf, and the sentence was changed to life imprisonment. Sent to Cherson in the Crimea in 655, Martin starved and died three months after his arrival. He is the last pope to have been martyred.
Nothing is known of St. James the Greater's early life, though it has been established that he is the son of Zebedee and Salome and brother of John the disciple. The title "the Greater" was added to ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Margaret was an English princess. She and her mother sailed to Scotland to escape from the king who had conquered their land. King Malcolm of Scotland welcomed them and fell in love with the beautiful princess. Margaret and Malcolm were married before too long. As ... continue readingMore Female Saints
Saint Michael the Archangel isn't a saint, but rather he is an angel, and the leader of all angels and of the army of God. This is what the title "Archangel" means, that he is above all the others in rank. St. Michael has four main responsibilities or offices, as we ... continue reading
Franciscan missionary and traveler. Born Odoric Mattiussi at Villanova, near Pordenone, Italy, he entered the Franciscans in 1300 and became a hermit. After several years, he took to preaching in the region of Udine, northern Italy, attracting huge crowds ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith Fournier
This great defender of the faith insisted on the central claim of Christianity: God can be known and loved-indeed, that is why He came into our midst in the person of His Son; so that through a relationship with Jesus Christ, man could participate in the very ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes