Thought for the Day – 5 February – The Memorial of St Agatha (c 231- c 251)
Female saints were numerous in the early Church and the cruelties these saints suffered for their faith encouraged many others to go to their martyrdom. These early witnesses to the faith became the great Christian heroes and heroines and their zeal did a great deal to cement and establish the faith. Many. like St Agatha, suffered centuries ago but their memory is kept fresh, as if they had died yesterday. As is common in the story of man, we learn not from our past, persecutions against Christians seems to constantly rear it’s ugly head – now we suffer too and our women are under a great attack in the modern world. Let us call on Agatha to be with us, to pray for us all and in particular to pray that all Christian women, may protect their purity and chastity.
St Agatha, pray for us!
The incorrupt body of St Agatha was transferred to Constantinople in the 11th century and then returned to Catania. The body is now preserved in different reliquaries. “The arms, legs, and breasts are preserved in a glass case in an incorrupt condition, although rather dried and dark after more than 17 centuries. The skull and principal relics are at Catania, enclosed in an effigy on which rests a costly jeweled crown. The reliquary consists of the figure of the Saint from the head to the waist and is situated in an upright position. The figure is entirely covered with precious gems, rings, bracelets, pins, chains, and jeweled flowers and crosses…”