Bishop and classical scholar. Caius Sollius Apollinaris Sidonius was born in Lugdunum, about 423. He was from a noble family and received a brilliant education in the classical style. Entering the military, he married Papianilla, the daughter of Avitus, who became emperor of the West in 455. Living at the imperial court, Apollinaris survived the deposition of Avitus in 456 and subsequently served as the chief senator and prefect of Rome from 468 to 469. He then retired to Gaul, where he carried on a vast correspondence that gives considerable insight into the political period. In 469, although unwilling and not yet a priest, Apollinaris was named bishop of Avernum. He was chosen because of his piety and because he was considered the only one capable of defending the people against the invading Goths, under Alaric. Apollinaris assumed the humble lifestyle of the bishopric and learned so much about ecclesiastical affairs that he was soon recognized as an authority. He opposed King Euric of the Goths in 474 and was exiled briefly. He was an outstanding orator and poet, and he introduced the days of public prayer called "Rogation Days." Twenty-four of his letters and poems survived and are a valuable resource on the period. Apollinaris is considered to be the last representative of the great classical culture of Rome which was being overrun by the Germanic invasions.
St. Benjamin, Martyr (Feast Day - March 31) The Christians in Persia had enjoyed twelve years of peace during the reign of Isdegerd, son of Sapor III, when in 420 it was disturbed by the indiscreet ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
St. Joan of Arc is the patroness of soldiers and of France. On January 6, 1412, Joan of Arc was born to pious parents of the French peasant class, at the obscure village of Domremy, near the province of Lorraine. At a very early age, she heard voices: those of St. ... continue readingMore Female Saints
St. Michael the Archangel - Feast day - September 29th The name Michael signifies "Who is like to God?" and was the warcry of the good angels in the battle fought in heaven against satan and his followers. Holy Scripture describes St. Michael as "one of the chief ... continue reading
The name Gabriel means "man of God," or "God has shown himself mighty." It appears first in the prophesies of Daniel in the Old Testament. The angel announced to Daniel the prophecy of the seventy weeks. His name also occurs in the apocryphal book of Henoch. He was the ... continue reading
Peregrine Laziosi was born of a wealthy family at Forli, Italy, in 1260. As a youth he was active in politics as a member of the anti-papal party. During one uprising, which the Pope sent St. Philip ... continue reading
By Alex Basile
Every carpenter must practice patience. We can learn important lessons from the wood shop in Nazareth from the humble Saint Joseph. I have always been a "do it yourself" type of guy thanks to my father. My dad is always a steady presence during my home-improvement ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes