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.
St. Gregory, born at Rome about the year 540, was the son of Gordianus, a wealthy senator, who later renounced the world and became one of the seven deacons of Rome. After he had acquired the usual ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Empress mother of Constantine the Great. She was a native of Bithynia, who married the then Roman general Constantius I Chlorus about 270. Constantine was born soon after, and in 293, Constantius was made Caesar, or junior emperor. He divorced Helena to marry co ... 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
Christians who breathed a sigh of relief when Constantine proclaimed Christianity the state religion, believing this would end the bloodshed and martyrdom. But it was all too short a time until they ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith A Fournier
Over the centuries, the Jesuits have been relied upon by Popes as trustworthy, heroic soldiers for Jesus Christ and His Church. Yes, there have been times when the company seemed to lose its fervor. However, Jesus Christ the King has always sent His Spirit to ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes