November 28, 2017

Saint Saturninus, Apostle to the Gauls

St. Saturninus

According to the 1962 Missal of Saint John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, November 28th is the feast day of Saint Saturninus, the early 3rd century bishop. missionary and martyr. Saturninus lived heroic virtue in imitation of Christ. The first named prelate in Gaul, he is called the Apostle to the Gauls.

The Life and Holy Martyrdom of St. Saturninus 

Saturninus went from Rome, by direction of Pope Fabian, about the year 245, to preach the faith in Gaul. He fixed his episcopal see at Toulouse, and thus became the first Christian bishop of that city. There were but few Christians in the place. However, their number grew fast after the coming of the Saint; and his power was felt by the spirits of evil, who received the worship of the heathen. His power was felt the more because he had to pass daily through the capitol, the high place of the heathen worship, on the way to his own church. One day a great multitude was gathered by an alter, where a bull stood ready for the sacrifice. A man in the crowd pointed out Saturninus, who was passing by, and the people would have forced him to idolatry; but the holy bishop answered: "I know but on God, and to Him I will offer the sacrifice of praise. How can I fear gods who, as you say, are afraid of me?" On this he was fastened to the bull, which was driven down the capitol. [According to tradition] The brains of the Saint were scattered on the steps. His mangled body was taken up and buried by two devout women.

Collect Prayer

O God, Who grants us to be gladdened by the heroic witness of Your bishop Saint Satruninus, Your Martyr, vouchsafe that we may be helped by his merits. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever. Amen. St. Satruninus, pray that we may be faithful.

Adapted excerpt from Butler's Lives of the Saints, Fr. Alban Butler, 1878.

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