During the reign of the Byzantine emperor Leo III (717-741), faithful eastern Catholics were subjected to a double threat. The emperor, an adherent of the Iconoclastic heresy that condemned the use of religious images, persecuted those who continued to uphold the Church's teaching regarding these holy objects. At the same time, Moslem forces under the khalif Isam were pressing into the Byzantine territories of the eastern Mediterranean, persecuting all the Christians they encountered. The nobleman Eutychius was one of many prisoners captured by the invaders and imprisoned. Thereafter, a series of battlefield losses enraged the khalif, prompting him to order mass executions of Christian prisoners. In city after city, every Christian was slaughtered. Even after much torture, Eutychius refused to deny his faith, and was martyred at Carrhae, Mesopotamia (Harran, Turkey). Those venerating Eutychius' relics obtained "healing of every kind," according to the chronicler of his martyrdom, Saint Theophanes (+817). Theophanes himself suffered torture, imprisionment, and exile for opposing the Iconoclastic heresy.
Clare was a beautiful Italian noblewoman who became the Foundress of an order of nuns now called "Poor Clares." When she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, her heart burned with a great desire to imitate Francis and to live a poor humble life for Jesus. So ... continue readingMore Female Saints
Felix was the son of Hermias, a Syrian who had been a Roman soldier. He was born on his father's estate at Nola near Naples, Italy. On the death of his father, Felix distributed his inheritance to ... continue reading
By Justin Soutar