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Vincent of Saragossa, by the Grace of God, Invincible

Not to make light of the suffering of the Saints, but while other kids grew up on tales of the bogeyman, the man with a hook on his hand, babayaga, etc., the kids at my bus-stop told stories of the saint and their tortures. There is enough in all these stories to thoroughly terrify the heart of a young child. Today the church remembers Vincent of Sargossa (Zaragosa) who survived and prevailed some of the very worst treatement available in those times, by the Grace of God.

The Liturgical Calendar: The Church Remembers

Today the church remembers Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304.

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Vincent was a deacon in an early Christian church in Saragossa, Spain. He was a trusted friend and assistant of the bishop, Valerius. He was a very effective leader and therefore a prize catch for the Spanish governor, Dacian, who was implementing the Emperor Diocletian’s policy of persecution. Dacian’s agents used every means known to them to brainwash Vincent, since, if he gave up Christianity, it would surely result in the defection of others.

Vincent was submitted to intensive argumentation, interrupted by excruciating tortures. He was beaten, chained, stretched on the rack, cooked on a gridiron, and the floor of his bare cell was covered with broken glass on which he had to walk and recline. Vincent did not renounce Christ or acknowledge the Roman deities.

Finally the exhausted and mutilated saint was released, perhaps as an example to other Christians of what they might have to suffer. He died shortly after his release. But his steadfastness, far from discouraging other Christians, strengthened them in their determination to remain faithful to the Lord.

Even as your holy Deacon and Martyr Vincent triumphed over suffering and despised death: Grant that we may endure hardness and wax valiant in the fight. Amen.

Almighty God, your deacon Vincent, upheld by you, was not terrified by threats nor overcome by torments: Strengthen us to endure all adversity with invincible and steadfast faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

January 22, 2014 Posted by | Faith, Geography / Maps, Lectionary Readings | , | Leave a comment