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Saint of the day : St Martin I, Pope and Martyr


A member of the Roman clergy, St Martin was sent to Constantinople. Upon the death of Pope Theodore he was elected to succeed him, in the year 649. In the following October, he held a Council in the Lateran Church, in which he condemned the leaders of the heresy of the Monothelites, a modification of that of the Eutychians. A document emanating from the Emperor Constans was also censures.


This incensed the Emperor, and he sent Olympius, his chamberlain to Italy with the orders to cause the Pope to be put to death or to send him to the East as a prisoner. An attempt on the saint’s life in the Church of St Mary Major was miraculously diverted. Olympius now became reconciled to the Pope and went to Sicily.


The Emperor then sent Calliopas and Pellurus to Rome, with orders to seize St Martin. The Pope who lay sick, was seized, carried down the Tiber at midnight and conveyed to the East. After three months, he arrived at the island of Naxos, where his guards kept him a whole year and subjected him many humiliations.


In 654, Martin reached Constantinople and for three months confined in a dungeon. His sufferings were extreme, but like St Stephen, he hoped that his persecutors would be brought to repentance.


Being kind, loving others as yourself and being serviceable to God through serving others was the mark of this humble man. May we all aspire to be serviceable to others knowing that we might serve God Himself. Amen


St Martin, pray for us.

Happy feast day to all Martin.

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