Honoring the saints of the West (1)
The author of this text himself St. Archbishop John (Maximovich) of Shanghai Miracle Worker (+1966) was canonized a saint on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Orthodoxy in America in 1994 and his memory is celebrated on July 2 in all Orthodox Sisters-Churches. The text we offer here is from his report to the Council of Bishops in 1950.
Christianity in the West was preached in the first centuries in many places by the apostles themselves. For centuries, Orthodoxy in the West was firmly defended, and Eastern confessors sought to seek support in times of heresy (St. Athanasius, St. Maximus). Many martyrs and ascetics, who served as the basis of the Church, celebrated here. of Western Christianity by the One Ecumenical Church obscured the truth. When it is established that an ascetic or saint was revered as a saint until the fall of the West, he is revered as a saint by the Orthodox Church.
Many saints are not given a special day to remember them, although some of them are mentioned in certain services. The lives of martyrs, ascetics and other saints are known only to God. They are all glorified on All Saints’ Day, as is said in Synaxara on this day. The saints, hitherto unknown in the East, but revered within the West, belong in their earthly life to different centuries and have become famous in various ways.
They are the martyrs of the first centuries of the early Christian church, the ascetics and the saints. The latter two persons partly merged, as many of the ascetics later became saint-bishops. Regarding the first, ie. martyrs, there is no dispute, because by their sufferings for Christ they acquire the right of veneration from the Church. Such are, for example, St. Potin bishop of Lyon and the other martyrs of Lyon.
We have long been a torment in Marseilles. Victor, injured by his baptized guards Alexander, Felician and Longinus. Above their tomb, Rev. Cassian the Roman created a monastery in which he struggled and died. In the Orthodox lunar calendar we find several martyrs named Victor, but from the description of their sufferings we understand that these are different saints.
From ancient times the holy martyr is also very revered. An Albanian near London, where his relics still rest. Some church sources mention the legion of St. Maurice, who suffered for Christ in the mountains of Switzerland, like the company of St. Andrew Stratilat in the East. This Mauritius is named after another Mauritius who suffered with his son Photius, but in the place and type of their suffering they are clearly different saints.
He consecrated with his blood Toulouse and Bishop Soturnin, who was dragged for Christ through the city streets in the middle of the third century.
All these martyrs, whose blood was the seed of Christ, whom the Church sings almost daily in the various martyr’s troparions and sticheras, represent the crimson with which the Church of Christ adorned herself.
The successors of the martyrs in the establishment of faith and piety in the West, as well as in the East, were the saints and reverends. The first monasticism in the West was closely connected with the East. Information about him and his founders have been preserved in the works of their students or other close writers at the time.
One of the main nurseries in the West was the Lerin Monastery. The life of its founder, St. Honorius, is preserved in his eulogy by his disciple Hilary, Bishop of Arles. It is known from him that St. Honorius traveled through Egypt and Palestine with his brother, and after his return from there he established his own monastery in Florina. He performed many miracles during his earthly life. St. Pavlin Nolanski was spiritually connected with the monastery, on whose instructions St. Evcheriy arrived here, leaving many works, including “Life of St. Maurice and the Holy Martyrs of the Thebes Legion”. Rev. Cassian lived in the monastery for some time and later founded his monastery in Marseilles. It is noteworthy that St. Cassian is revered throughout the Orthodox Church, although we commemorate him once every four years, and in the Catholic Church as a local saint his memory is commemorated annually in Marseilles, where the remains of the martyr Victor rest in the temple. of his relics preserved after their destruction during the French Revolution. St. Vincent of Lerin, a church teacher who is more revered in the East than in the West, also left his work for the Sacred Tradition in the same monastery. England and Ireland were connected with the East through the Lerin Monastery, because it was a spiritual support for the educator of England, Rev. Augustine and his associates. St. Patrick lived there for a short time and was enlightened in Ireland.
The monastery, founded by St. Columbus in Ireland, was in communion and regular bilateral relations with the monasteries of the East in the eleventh century, and, according to some sources, after the break of Rome with Constantinople. The remains of this monastery still exist today with the relics of its venerable founder. The followers of St. Columbus were the Venerable Columbus, Fridolin and Gaul, who went from Ireland to Switzerland in the 6th century and contributed greatly in Gaul and northern Italy to the establishment of Christianity and the protection of Orthodoxy from heretics.
During their lifetime, they performed miracles and predicted the future. Their detailed lives are kept in the monasteries there and their memory is revered in the places associated with them.
Among the French monks stand out the names of St. Genoveva and St. Claudoald, called Claude.
Reverend Genoveva, born in 423 and introduced herself to the Lord in 512, was distinguished from her childhood by piety and spent her whole life in prayers and extreme abstinence. In her childhood, her vocation was foreseen by St. Hermann of Auxerre, and he blessed her to dedicate herself to God. She was spiritually connected with Rev. Simeon the Pilgrim, who knew about her. She performed many miracles during her life, the most glorious being when she saved Paris from Attila with her prayers. The memory of this miracle is not only preserved in the church tradition, but is also marked with a column at the place where Attila reached. She was considered the patroness of Paris and France, and the destruction of her relics during the revolution did not harm or end her veneration as such.
Venerable Clodoald was from a royal family that perished in a time of strife. Growing up and understanding the miseries of earthly glory, he did not want to claim his rights to the throne, but accepted monasticism and the strictest ascetic feat. He spent some time in complete solitude, then founded a monastery, in the temple of which his relics are kept to this day. He introduced himself to the Lord in the middle of the 6th century.
St. Clotilda was the grandmother of Rev. Claudoald and the Queen of France, who raised her grandson. For France it has the same significance as for the Roman Empire St. Helena, for Russia – St. Olga and for the Czech Republic – St. Ludmila. Thanks to her, her husband Clovis I was baptized and then finally established himself in Orthodoxy. Through her life, instructions and prayers, she preached and affirmed Christianity in France. After the death of her husband, she led a life of abstinence and care for the needy and needy. Warned from above of her demise (30 days before), she presented herself in peace on June 3, 533. Her relics were kept and lithium marches were used with them until the French Revolution, when they were burned.