Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 6 December – Saint Asella of Rome , “A Flower of the Lord” (Died c 406)

Saint of the Day – 6 December – Saint Asella of Rome (Died c 406) Virgin Hermit Friend of St Jerome., Ascetic, Prioress, “A Flower of the Lord.” She died in c 406 of natural causes. Also known as Osella and Ocella.

The Roman Martyrology states: “At Rome, St Asella, Virgin, who according to the words of St Jerome, being blessed from her mother’s womb, lived to old age in fasting and prayer.

Asella was a disciple and friend of Saint Jerome, who spoke of her in his writings. She was a member of a noble and wealthy Roman Christian family, perhaps the sister of Marcella, another ascetic and saint.

When Asella was ten years old, she heard St Athanasius speak during his third and final visit to Rome and that, already being a “pious child”, inspired her to “dedicate her life to the service of Christ.” At first, her parents would not allow her to wear the garments usually worn by ascetics but she secretly sold a gold necklace, paid for the garment’s production and when she was 12, surprised her parents by appearing to them in “this garb of consecration.”

From that time on, Asella lived in silence and seclusion, living in a small cell, sleeping on the ground or on a stone, upon which she also prayed. She fasted all year, living on bread, salt, and water, often eating nothing for two or three days,and would fast for many weeks at a time during Lent. She lived a life of self-isolation, leaving her cell only to visit the Churches of the Martyrs and often, without being seen by others and rarely by her own sister.

According to historian Claude Fieury, Asella never spoke to any man. As hagiographer Agnes Dunbar stated, “She worked with her hands and sang psalms.” Despite her austere lifestyle, it did not affect her health. Jerome wrote that “with a sound body and even sounder soul, she found for herself a monkish cell in the midst of a busy Rome.” Fleury also said about Asella: “Her life was simple and regular and in the midst of Rome led a life of perfect solitude.”

St Jerome also cited Asella as an example and role model for young women, widows and virgins, calling her “A Flower of the Lord.”

In 405, the Bishop and Historian ,Palladius of Galatia visited Rome and met Asella, who was 70 years old at the time. He called her “the gentlest of women” and reported that she was in charge of a community of nuns.


Notre-Dame de Séez/ Our Lady of Séez, Normandy, France (5th Century) and Memorials of the Saints – 6 December

Notre-Dame de Séez/ Our Lady of Séez, Normandy, France (5th Century) – 6 December:

Saint Latuinus (Died c 440), the first Bishop of Séez, built the first Cathedral to Our Lady in the Diocese of Seez. The original Cathedral would date back to the middle of the 5th century. A later Church replaced it – one dedicated under the title of Notre-Dame-du-Vivier. The Normans, at the beginning of the 5th century, destroyed this structure. A third Church was built, a hundred meters away on the site of a pagan temple. This one had added to it, the names of the martyrs Saints Fervais and Protase, whose relics were enshrined there. A special Chapel in the Cathedral recalled the memory of the first cathedral dedicated to Our Lady of Seez, for Mary remained the principal Patroness of the Diocese.
Many famous people made pilgrimages to Our Lady of Seez – among them were Saint Germain, Bishop of Paris; Saint Evroult, Founder of the Abbey of Ouche; Saint Osmond, Count of Seez, who became Bishop of Salisbury; Saint Thierry, Abbot of Saint Evroult; Saint Louis IX was there in 1259 and about the same time Blessed Giles, one of the early companions of Saint Francis of Assisi, came to recommend to Mary’s protection, the first French Franciscan Convent, which he was going to found at Seez. The Augustinians served the sanctuary from 1127.
In the latter half of the 18th century, the Bishop of Seez, in response to the wishes of the entire Diocese, repaired and embellished the Chapel of Our Lady at considerable expense. Later the work of redoing the entire Cathedral was undertaken. In June of 1784, the Cathedral chapter asked the Bishop to consecrate the new Altar and the entire Cathedral under the patronage of Our Lady. This was done in 1786.
Mary rewarded the prelates for their zeal in promoting her honour, by granting all of them the grace of Martyrdom in the violent persecution that broke out in 1792.
The beautiful façade of the Cathedral was destroyed in 1795. A revolutionary bought the debris with the intent of building a private property, however, two attempts proved failures and he finally gave up the attempt. After the revolution, a new Cathedral was built when the Diocese was re-established by the Concordat of 1802.

St Nicholas (270-343) (Optional Memorial) Bishop, Confessor, Abbot, Apostle of Charity, Miracle-worker.
Full Biography here:

St Abraham of Kratia ( c 474–c 558) Bishop, Monk, Hermit.

St Aemilianus the Martyr
Bl Angelica of Milazzo
St Asella of Rome (Died c 406) Virgin Hermit Friend of St Jerome
St Boniface the Martyr
St Dativa the Martyr
St Dionysia the Martyr
St Gerard of La Charite
St Gertrude the Elder
St Giuse Nguyen Duy Khang
St Isserninus of Ireland
Bl Janos Scheffler
St Leontia the Martyr
St Majoricus the Martyr

St Peter Pascual (Died 1299) Bishop and Martyr, Theologian.
His Feast Day should be 23 October – changed in 1969.
His life and death:

St Polychronius
St Tertus

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
• Blessed Esteban Vázquez Alonso
• Blessed Florencio Rodríguez Guemes
• Blessed Gregorio Cermeño Barceló
• Blessed Heliodoro Ramos García
• Blessed Ireneo Rodríguez González
• Blessed Juan Lorenzo Larragueta Garay
• Blessed Luis Martínez Alvarellos
• Blessed Luisa María Frías Cañizares
• Blessed Miguel Lasaga Carazo
• Blessed Narciso Pascual y Pascual
• Blessed Pascual Castro Herrera
• Blessed Vicente Vilumbrales Fuente

Martyred Salesians of Guadalajara (Spanish Civil War) – 7 beati:
• Blessed Gregorio Cermeño Barceló
• Blessed Ireneo Rodríguez González
• Blessed Luisa María Frías Cañizares
• Blessed Narciso Pascual y Pascual
• Blessed Vicente Vilumbrales Fuente