mardi 31 mars 2015

Saint ACACE AGATHANGELOS d'ANTIOCHE de PISIDIE (ACACIUS), évêque et confesseur



Saint Acace d'Antioche

Évêque (+ 250)

Evêque d'Antioche, il fut arrêté pendant la persécution de l'empereur Dèce. Nous avons le compte-rendu de son interrogatoire où Acace réfute avec une verve extraordinaire l'interrogatoire du préfet Marcien qui le laisse parler puis l'acquitte. Les « acta » de son interrogatoire semblent authentiques par leur simplicité.

SOURCE : http://nominis.cef.fr/contenus/saint/893/Saint-Acace-d-Antioche.html

Saint Acace Agathangelos

Évêque d’Antioche de Pisidie

Fête le 31 mars

Églises d’Orient

† v. 251


Autres graphies : Acace, Achatius ou Acacius

Il fut probablement évêque d’Antioche, en Pisidie, ou de Mélitène, en Arménie. Nous possédons le compte rendu de son interrogatoire par le préfet Marcien, interrogatoire au cours duquel il argumenta si brillamment contre l’idolâtrie que l’empereur Dèce lui pardonna. Les Grecs le surnommèrent Agathange (bon ange) et Thaumaturge (faiseur de miracles). Il est très vénéré en Orient. Ses « acta » semblent authentiques. Il se peut qu’Acacius ou Achatius ait été évêque d’Antioche ou de Mélitène, mais il se peut également qu’il n’ait pas été évêque du tout. Éminent dans les cercles chrétiens d’Antioche, il est sommé de paraître devant le fonctionnaire romain local, Marcien. Acace refuse de sacrifier aux dieux païens, et bien qu’il ne fournisse pas les noms de ses camarades chrétiens, il est envoyé en prison. Apparemment, quand l’empereur Dèce reçoit le rapport de son procès, il est tellement impressionné par les deux hommes qu’il promeut Marcien et pardonne à Acacius. Bien que désigné comme martyr, il n’y a pas de preuve qu’il meurt pour la foi. Trois autres martyrs des premiers siècles s’appellent aussi Acace.

ACTES DU PROCÈS DE SAINT ACACE, ÉVÊQUE D’ANTIOCHE DE PISIDIE, EN 250.

Ce personnage fut très probablement évêque d'Antioche de Pisidie, colonie romaine. La pièce originale a dû être en langue grecque ; mais on ne la possède que dans la traduction, laquelle présente d'ailleurs de solides garanties d'authenticité. Le procès de saint Acace est très remarquable parce qu'il est clos par une grâce impériale.

BOLL. Act. SS. 31/III. Mort, III, 903-905. — RUINART, Acta sinc., p. 139. — EDM. LE BLANT, Recherches sur l'accusation de magie dirigée contre les premiers chrétiens (1869). — EDM. LE BLANT, Note sur les bases juridiques des procès dirigés contre les première chrétiens (1866), p. 8-13. — P. ALLLARD, Hist. des perséc., t. II, p. 412 suiv.

ACTES DU PROCÈS DE SAINT ACACE, ÉVÊQUE ET MARTYR.

Chaque fois que nous rappelons les actions illustres des. serviteurs de Dieu, nous rendons grâces à Celui qui protège le patient dans la souffrance et qui couronne le vainqueur dans la gloire. Martianus, consulaire, ennemi de la loi chrétienne, se fit amener Acace que l'on lui avait signalé comme le refuge et le bouclier des chrétiens d'Antioche.

Quand Acace eut été introduit, Martianus dit : « Puisque tu vis sous les lois romaines, tu dois aimer nos princes ».

Acace répondit : « Eh qui a plus à coeur de le faire et qui aime mieux l'empereur que les chrétiens? Nous prions assidûment pour lui, demandant à Dieu de lui donner une longue vie, un gouvernement juste, un règne paisible ; nous prions pour le salut de l'armée, la conservation de l'empire et du monde.

— Je te félicite pour ces sentiments, mais afin que l'empereur en reconnaisse la sincérité, offre-lui avec nous un sacrifice.

— Je prie mon Seigneur, le grand et vrai Dieu, pour le salut du prince ; mais celui-ci n'a pas le droit d'exiger de nous un sacrifice, ni nous n'avons le droit de lui en offrir. Qui donc peut adresser son culte à un homme ?

— Dis-nous alors à quel Dieu tu offres tes prières, afin que nous aussi nous l'honorions.

— Je te souhaite de connaître mon Dieu qui est le Dieu véritable.

— Comment se nomme-t-il ?

— Le Dieu d'Abraham, le Dieu d'Isaac, le Dieu de Jacob.

— Sont-ce là les noms de ces dieux ?

— Ce n'est pas eux qui sont Dieu, mais celui qui leur a parlé ; et c'est lui que nous devons craindre.

— Quel est-il ?

— Adonaï, le Très-Haut, qui est assis sur les chérubins et les séraphins.

— Qui est-ce séraphin ?

— C'est le ministre du Très-Haut et le plus rapproché du trône sublime.

— Cette fausse philosophie t'a fourvoyé. Méprise les choses invisibles et reconnais Ies dieux véritables qui sont sous tes yeux.

— Quels sont ces dieux auxquels larve= me faire sacrifier ?

— C'est Apollon, notre bienfaiteur, celui qui, repousse loin de nous la peste et la famine, et par qui le monde entier est gouverné et conservé.

— Ah ! oui, un dieu que l'on a tué, car c'est bien ce que vous dites de lui ; un dieu qui, épris d'une fille, poursuivait l'aventure, ignorant qu'il perdrait la proie avant de l'avoir saisie. Un tel ignorant, c'est clair, n'était pas dieu ; l'était-il plus quand une autre fille le trompa ? Il en eut bien d'autres à souffrir, la fortune lui réservait de plus cuisants chagrins. Il aimait les petits garçons: Épris d'un certain Hyacinthe, il brûlait d'amour pour cet enfant; et le pauvre dieu qui ne savait pas l'avenir, tua d'un coup de disque celui qu'il vulait posséder. Un dieu, lui, qui, au temps jadis, se fit maçon avec Neptune, et ensuite garda les troupeaux d'autrui, est-ce a lui que je dois sacrifier? Ou bien tu préfères peut-être Esculape qui mourut foudroyé, ou bien encore Vénus, une adultère, ou les autres monstres. Ainsi ma vie est en jeu si je n'adore pas des coquins que je me garderai bien d'imiter, et je les méprise, et je les accuse, et ils me font horreur ; si quelqu'un les imitait, on le mettrait en prison ? Vous adorez ici ce que vous condamnez là. »

Martianus dit : « Les chrétiens n'en font pas d'autres, il leur faut déblatérer sur nos dieux. C'est entendu. Maintenant je t'ordonne de venir avec mai au temple de Jupiter et de Junon, nous y ferons un bon 'souper et nous rendrons aux immortels l'honneur qui leur est dû ».

Acace dit : « Je ne puis cependant pas faire un sacrifice à un individu qui est enterré dans l'île de Crète. Ah çà, est-il ressuscité » ?

Martianus dit : « Sacrifie ou meurs ».

Acace reprit : « Moeurs de Dalmate. En ce pays-là, il y a des brigands qui font métier de voler, ils s'embusquent le long d'un chemin détourné et tombent sur les voyageurs. Vient-il un passant, on l'arrête: la bourse ou la vie. Nul ne demande de raison, mais considère la force de l'agresseur. Tu leur ressembles. Tu commandes le mal, ou tu menaces de mort. Je ne crains rien, je n'ai pas peur. Le droit public se charge de punir la débauche, l'adultère, le vol, la sodomie, les maléfices et l'homicide. Si je suis coupable de, ces crimes, je suis le premier à me condamner ; si, au contraire, j'adore le Dieu véritable et qu'on me tue, ce n'est plus la justice, c'est l'arbitraire.. Le prophète a raison de s'écrier : « Il n'y a personne qui fasse le bien, tous se sont relâchés, ils se sont rendus inutiles ». Ainsi tu ne saurais faire autre chose que ce que tu fais. Nous lisons dans nos livres : « Comme tu auras jugé, tu seras jugé toi-même », et ailleurs : « Comme tu auras agi, l'on agira envers toi ».

Martianus : « Je n'ai pas été envoyé pour juger, mais pour contraindre : si tu méprises le commandement, tu seras châtié ».

Acace : « Et mon commandement à moi est de ne pas renier mon Dieu. Si tu sers un homme chétif et charnel que la mort atteindra bientôt et qui, tu le sais, deviendra la pâture des vers, combien plus dois-je obéir à Dieu dont la toute-puissance est éternelle, et qui a dit de lui-même : « Celui qui m'aura renié devant les hommes, je le renierai devant mon Père céleste, quand je serai venu dans ma gloire et ma force juger les vivants et les morts » !

Martianus : « Tu viens de déclarer l'erreur de votre doctrine que j'étais, depuis longtemps, avide d'entendre. Tu viens de dire, n'est-ce pas, nue Dieu a un fils ?

— Oui.

— Et quel est ce fils de Dieu ?

— Le Verbe de grâce et de vérité.

— Est-ce là son nom ?Actes du procès de saint Acace

— Tu ne me parlais pas de son nom, mais de sa puissance.

— Eh bien, son nom, maintenant ?

— Jésus-Christ.

— Qui fut sa mère ?

— Dieu n'a pas engendré son fils, ainsi que font les hommes, de l'union avec une femme, mais il a formé de ses mains le premier Adam, car il ne faut pas croire que la majesté divine ait eu des rapports avec une femme mortelle. Dieu donc a fait de terre le corps du premier homme et là où il a déjà mis sa parfaite image, il ajouta l'âme et l'esprit. De même, le Fils de Dieu, le Verbe de vérité sort du coeur de Dieu, ainsi qu'il est écrit : Mon coeur a proféré une parole parfaite.

— Alors c'est un Dieu qui a un corps?

— Lui seul connaît la forme invisible que nous ignorons, mais nous adorons sa force et sa puissante.

— S'il n'a pas de corps, il n'a pas de coeur, car le sens exige l'organe.

— La sagesse ne naît pas avec des organes, elle est donnée par Dieu. Quel rapport y a-t-il entre le sens et l'organe ?

— Vois les Cataphryges ; leur religion est ancienne, cependant ils l'ont abandonnée pour la nôtre, aujourd'hui ils sacrifient aux dieux. Fais comme eux. Rassemble tous les catholiques et suis avec eux la religion de l'empereur. Ton peuple, je le sais, se laisse conduire, par toi.

— C'est à Dieu, non à moi, qu'obéissent les chrétiens. Ils m'écouteront si je leur enseigne la justice, ils me mépriseront si je leur conseille le mal.

— Donne-moi leurs noms à tous ?

— Leurs noms sont écrits au livre de vie. Comment des yeux mortels pourront-ils déchiffrer ce que la puissance du Dieu immortel et invisible a écrit ?

— Où sont les magiciens qui t'aident dans tes artifices, ou ceux qui t'ont enseigné tes prestiges ?

— Nous avons tout reçu de Dieu, et la magie nous fait horreur.

— Vous êtes des magiciens, puisque vous avez invepté une religion.

— Nous détruisons les dieux créés par vous et dont vous avez peur. Quand l'ouvrier manque de pierre ou que l'on manque d'ouvriers, vous n'avez plus de dieux. Le Dieu que nous craignons, nous, n'est pas de notre fabrication, c'est nous qui sommes créés par lui, car il est le Maître ; nous sommes aimés de lui, car il est le Père, et comme un tendre pasteur il nous a arrachés à la mort éternelle.

— Allons, les noms, ou tu meurs !

— Je suis devant ton tribunal et tu' demandes des noms? Crois-tu donc venir à bout des autres, alors que tu te laisses vaincre par moi seul? Mais, tiens, tu veux des noms, eh bien, je m'appelle Acace et on m'a surnommé le « Bon Ange ». Fais ce que tu voudras. »

Martien dit : « Tu seras ramené en prison, les pièces du procès seront transmises à l'empereur. Il décidera de ton sort. »

Dèce, ayant lu toute la procédure, s'intéressa à cette controverse, et même il ne put s'empêcher de sourire en la lisant. Peu de temps après il donna à Martianus la légation de Pamphylie. Quant à Acace, qu'il admira fort, il lui fit grâce.

Telle fut la conduite du consulaire Martianus, sous le règne de Dèce, le quatre des calendes d'avril.

LES MARTYRS. TOME II. LE TROISIÈME SIÈCLE, DIOCLÉTIEN. Recueil de pièces authentiques sur les martre depuis les origines du christianisme jusqu'au XXe siècle TRADUITES ET PUBLIÉES Par le B. P. DOM H. LECLERCQ, Moine bénédictin de Saint-Michel de Farnborough. Imprimi potest FR. FERDINANDUS CABROL, Abbas Sancti Michaelis Farnborough. Die 15 Martii 1903. Imprimatur. Pictavii, die 24 Martii 1903. + HENRICUS, Ep. Pictaviensis.

SOURCE : https://www.bibliotheque-monastique.ch/bibliotheque/bibliotheque/saints/martyrs/martyrs0002.htm#_Toc90634904

Saint Acacius Agathangelos of Melitene

Also known as

Acacius

Acacius of Hither

Achates

Achatius

Agathangelos

The Good Angel

The Wonder Worker

Memorial

31 March

Profile

Bishop of Hither, Asia. Arrested in the persecutions of Decius and brought before the imperial tribunal for the crimes of Christianity and refusing to sacrifice to idols. His defense of the faith so impressed the judges that they set him free. Because of his arrest and his willingness to die for the faith he is often listed as a martyr, but he apparently survived the persecutions.

Died

c.251 of natural causes

Canonized

Pre-Congregation

Additional Information

Book of Saints, by the Monks of Ramsgate

Catholic Encyclopedia

Lives of the Saints, by Father Alban Butler

Saints of the Day, by Katherine Rabenstein

books

Our Sunday Visitor’s Encyclopedia of Saints

other sites in english

Catholic Online

Independent Catholic News

Wikipedia

MLA Citation

“Saint Acacius Agathangelos of Melitene“. CatholicSaints.Info. 28 May 2020. Web. 14 April 2021. <https://catholicsaints.info/saint-acacius-agathangelos-of-melitene/>

SOURCE : https://catholicsaints.info/saint-acacius-agathangelos-of-melitene/

Acacius Agathangelos B (AC)

(also known as Achatius)

Died c. 251.

"We venerate our God because He made us; we did not make Him. He as our Master loves us, for He is also our Father. Of His goodness He has rescued us from everlasting death." --Saint Acacius.

Saint Acacius, bishop of Antioch, Phrygia, led a devout life and was much revered for his charity and zeal by his flock who nicknamed him 'Agathangelus,' which means 'good angel,' and 'Thaumaturgus,' or the 'wonder-worker.' During the persecution of Christians under the Emperor Decius, not a single Christian in his diocese is said to have denied his faith.

Around 251, Decius's representative in Antioch, Martian, summoned the bishop for cross-examination. Acacius appeared and began by insisting that his flock was entirely faithful to the emperor. Martian responded that the saint should prove this by making sacrifice to the emperor as a god. This the bishop adamantly refused to do.

The following transcript is from the public record of this interrogation:

Martian: "As you have the happiness to live under the Roman laws, you are bound to love and honor our princes, who are our protectors."

Acacius: "Of all the subjects of the empire, none love and honor the emperor more than the Christians. We pray without intermission for his person, and that it may please God to grant him long life, prosperity, success, and all benedictions; that he may be endowed by Him with the spirit of justice and wisdom to govern his people; that his reign be auspicious, and prosperous, blessed with joy, peace, and plenty, throughout all the provinces that obey him."

Martian: "All this I commend; but that the emperor may be the better convinced of your submission and fidelity, come now and offer him a sacrifice with me."

Acacius: "I have already told you that I pray to the great and true God for the emperor; but he ought not to require a sacrifice from us, nor is there any due to him or to any man whatsoever."

Martian: "Tell us what God you adore, that we may also pay Him our offerings and homages."

Acacius: "I wish from my heart you did know Him."

Instead of instantly sentencing Acacius to death, Martian continued to question him. They discussed the nature of angels. They spoke about the myths of the Greeks and the Romans. They philosophized together about the nature of God:

Martian: "Tell me His Name."

Acacius: "He is called the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob."

Martian: "Are these the names of gods?"

Acacius: "By no means, but of men to whom the true God spoke; He is the only God, and He alone is to be adored, feared, and loved."

Martian: "What is this God?"

Acacius: "He is the most high Adonai, who is seated above the cherubim and seraphim."

Martian: "What is a seraph?"

Acacius: "A ministering spirit of the most high God, and one of the principal lords of the heavenly court."

Martian: "What chimeras are these? Lay aside these whims of invisible beings, and adore such gods as you can see."

Acacius: "Tell me who are those gods to whom you would have me sacrifice?"

Martian: "Apollo, the savior of men, who preserves us from pestilence and famine, who enlightens, preserves, and governs the universe."

Acacius: "Do you mean that wretch that could not preserve his own life: who, being in love with a young woman (Daphne), ran about distracted in pursuit of her, not knowing that he was never to possess the object of his desires? It is therefore evident that he could not foresee things to come, since he was in the dark as to his own fate, and as clear that he could be no god, who was thus cheated by a creature. All know likewise that he had a base passion for Hyacinth, a beautiful boy, and was so awkward as to break the head of that minion, the fond object of his criminal passion, with a quail.

"Is not he also that god who, with Neptune, turned mason, hired himself to a king (Laamedon of Troy), and built the walls of a city? Would you oblige me to sacrifice to such a divinity, or to Esculapius, thunderstruck by Jupiter? or to Venus, whose life was infamous, and to a hundred such monsters, to whom you offer sacrifice? No, though my life itself depended on it, ought I to pay divine honors to those whom I should blush to imitate, and of whom I can entertain no other sentiments than those of contempt and execration? You adore gods, the imitators of whom you yourselves would punish."

Martian: "It is usual for you Christians to raise several calumnies against our gods; for which reason I command you to come now with me to a banquet in honor of Jupiter and Juno, and acknowledge and perform what is due to their majesty."

Acacius: "How can I sacrifice to a man whose sepulcher is unquestionably in Crete? What! Is he risen again?"

Martian: "You must either sacrifice or die."

Acacius: "Finis is the custom of the Dalmatian robbers; when they have taken a passenger in a narrow way, they leave him no other choice but to surrender his money or his life. But, for my part, I declare to you that I fear nothing that you can do to me. The laws punish adulterers, thieves, and murderers. Were I guilty of any of those things, I should be the first man to condemn myself. But if my whole crime be the adoring of the true God, and I am on this account to be put to death, it is no longer a law but an injustice."

Martian: "I have no order to judge but to counsel you to obey. If you refuse, I know how to force you to a compliance."

Acacius: "I have a law which I will obey: this commands me not to renounce my God. If you think yourself bound to execute the orders of a man who in a little while must leave the world, and his body become the food of worms, much more strictly am I bound to obey the omnipotent God, Who is infinite and eternal, and Who hath declared, `Whoever shall deny Me before men, him will I deny before My Father.'"

Martian: "You now mention the error of your sect which I have long desired to be informed of: you say then that God hath a son?"

Acacius: "Doubtless He hath one."

Martian: "Who is this son of God?"

Acacius: "The Word of truth and grace."

Martian: "Is that His name?"

Acacius: "You did not ask me His name, but what He is."

Martian: "What then is His name?"

Acacius: "Jesus Christ."

Martian asked by what woman God had this son, he replied, that the divine generation of the Word is of a different nature from human generation, and proved it from the language the royal prophet uses of in Psalm 44.

Martian: "Is God then corporeal?"

Acacius: "He is known only to Himself. We cannot describe Him; He is invisible to us in this mortal state, but we are sufficiently acquainted with His perfections to confess and adore Him."

Martian: "If God hath no body, how can He have a heart or mind?"

Acacius: "Wisdom hath no dependence or connection with an organized body. What does having a body have to do with understanding?"

He then pressed him to sacrifice as did some of the heretical Montanists.

Acacius: "It is not me these people obey, but God. Let them hear me when I advise them to what is right; or let them despise me, if I offer them the contrary and endeavor to pervert them."

Martian then asked the saint to provide him with the names of other Christians. The bishop would give him only two names: his own, Acacius, and his nickname, Agathangelus.

Martian: "Give me all their names."

Acacius: "They are written in heaven, in God's invisible registers."

Martian: "Where are the magicians, your companions, and the teachers of this cunningly devised error [the priests?]?"

Acacius: "No one in the world abhors magic more than we Christians."

Martian: "Magic is the new religion which you introduce."

Acacius: "We destroy those gods whom you fear, though you made them yourselves. We, on the contrary, fear not him whom we have made with our hands, but Him who created us, and Who is the Lord and Master of all nature; Who loved us as our good Father, and redeemed us from death and hell as the careful and affectionate shepherd of our souls."

Martian: "Give the names I require, if you would avoid the torture."

Acacius: "I am before the tribunal, and do you ask me my name, and, not satisfied with that, you must also know those of the other ministers? Do you hope to conquer many; you, whom I alone am able thus to confound? If you desire to know our names, mine is Acacius. If you would know more, they call me Agathangelus, and my two companions are Piso, bishop of the Trojans, and Menander, a priest. Do now what you please."

Martian: "You shall remain in prison till the emperor is acquainted with what has passed on this subject, and sends his orders concerning you."

The emperor's representative was so impressed by Acacius that he sent a transcript of the whole interview to Decius himself. Decius smiled when he read it, promoted Martian to a higher post, and pardoned Bishop Acacius.
The acta of Acacius seem to be genuine. He is held in great veneration in the East (Attwater2, Benedictines, Bentley, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth). 

St. Acacius

Bishop of Melitene in the third century. The Greeks venerate him on different days, but especially on 31 March. He lived in the time of the persecution of Decius, and although it is certain that he was cited before the tribunal of Marcian to give an account of his faith, it is not sure that he died for it. He was indeed condemned to death, but the Emperor released him from prison after he had undergone considerable suffering. He was famous both for the splendour of his doctrinal teaching and the miracles he wrought.

There was a younger Acacius, who was also Bishop of Melitene, and who was conspicuous in the Council of Ephesus, but it is not certain that he is ranked among the saints.

Sources

Acta SS., March 3.

Campbell, Thomas. "St. Acacius." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 14 Apr. 2021 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01083a.htm>.

Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Stephen Patrick Wilson. Dedicated to Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. March 1, 1907. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.

Copyright © 2020 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

SOURCE : https://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01083a.htm

March 31

St. Acacius, or Achates, Bishop of Antioch, in Asia Minor, Confessor

ST. ACACIUS was bishop of Antioch, probably the town of that name in Phrygia, where the Marcionites were numerous. He was surnamed Agath-angel, or Good-angel, and extremely respected by the people for his sanctity. It was owing to his zeal that not one of his flock renounced Christ, by sacrificing to idols during the persecution of Decius, a weakness which several of the Marcionite heretics had betrayed. Our saint himself made a glorious confession of his faith; of which the following relation, transcribed from the public register, is a voucher:

Martian, a man of consular dignity, arriving at Antioch, a small town of his government, ordered the bishop to be brought before him. His name was Acacius, and he was styled the buckler and refuge of that country for his universal charity and episcopal zeal. Martian said to him: “As you have the happiness to live under the Roman laws, you are bound to love and honour our princes, who are our protectors.” Acacius answered: “Of all the subjects of the empire, none love and honour the emperor more than the Christians. We pray without intermission for his person, and that it may please God to grant him long life, prosperity, success, and all benedictions; that he may be endowed by him with the spirit of justice and wisdom to govern his people, that his reign be auspicious, and prosperous, blessed with joy, peace, and plenty throughout all the provinces that obey him.” MARTIAN. “All this I commend; but that the emperor may be the better convinced of your submission and fidelity, come now and offer him a sacrifice with me.” ACACIUS. “I have already told you, that I pray to the great and true God for the emperor; but he ought not to require a sacrifice from us, nor is there any due to him or to any man whatsoever.” MARTIAN. “Tell us what God you adore, that we may also pay him our offerings and homages?” ACACIUS. “I wish from my heart you did but know him to your advantage.” MARTIAN. “Tell me his name.” ACACIUS. “He is called the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob.” MARTIAN. “Are these the names of gods?” ACACIUS. “By no means, but of men to whom the true God spoke; he is the only God, and he alone is to be adored, feared, and loved.” MARTIAN. “What is this God?” ACACIUS. “He is the most high Adonia, who is seated above the cherubim and seraphim.” MARTIAN. “What is a seraph?” ACACIUS. “A ministering spirit of the most high God, and one of the principal lords of the heavenly court.” MARTIAN. “What chimeras are these? Lay aside these whims of invisible beings, and adore such gods as you can see.” ACACIUS. “Tell me who are those gods to whom you would have me sacrifice?” MARTIAN. “Apollo, the saviour of men, who preserves us from pestilence and famine, who enlightens, preserves, and governs the universe.” ACACIUS. “Do you mean that wretch that could not preserve his own life: who, being in love with a young woman, (Daphne,) ran about distracted in pursuit of her, not knowing that he was never to possess the object of his desires. It is therefore evident that he could not foresee things to come, since he was in the dark as to his own fate: and as clear that he could be no god, who was thus cheated by a creature. All know likewise that he had a base passion for Hyacinth, a beautiful boy, and was so awkward as to break the head of that minion, the fond object of his criminal passion, with a quoit. Is not he also that god who, with Neptune, turned mason, hired himself to a king, (Laomedon of Troy,) and built the walls of a city? Would you oblige me to sacrifice to such a divinity, or to Esculapius, thunderstruck by Jupiter? or to Venus, whose life was infamous, and to a hundred such monsters to whom you offer sacrifice? No, though my life itself depended on it, ought I to pay divine honours to those whom I should blush to imitate, and of whom I can entertain no other sentiments than those of contempt and execration? You adore Gods, the imitators of whom you yourselves would punish.” MARTIAN. “It is usual for you Christians to raise several calumnies against our gods; for which reason I command you to come now with me to a banquet in honour of Jupiter and Juno, and acknowledge and perform what is due to their majesty.” ACACIUS. “How can I sacrifice to a man whose sepulchre is unquestionably in Crete? What! is he risen again?” MARTIAN. “You must either sacrifice or die.” ACACIUS. “This is the custom of the Dalmatian robbers; when they have taken a passenger in a narrow way, they leave him no other choice but to surrender his money or his life. But, for my part, I declare to you that I fear nothing that you can do to me. The laws punish adulterers, thieves, and murderers. Were I guilty of any of those things, I should be the first man to condemn myself. But if my whole crime be the adoring of the true God, and I am on this account to be put to death, it is no longer a law but an injustice.” MARTIAN. “I have no order to judge but to counsel you to obey. If you refuse, I know how to force you to a compliance.” ACACIUS. “I have a law which I will obey: this commands me not to renounce my God. If you think yourself bound to execute the orders of a man who in a little time hence must leave the world, and his body become the food of worms, much more strictly am I bound to obey the omnipotent God, who is infinite and eternal, and who hath declared, Whoever shall deny me before men, him will I deny before my Father,” MARTIAN. “You now mention the error of your sect which I have long desired to be informed of: you say then that God hath a son?” ACACIUS. “Doubtless he hath one.” MARTIAN. “Who is this son of God?” ACACIUS. “The Word of truth and grace.” MARTIAN. “Is that his name?” ACACIUS. “You did not ask me his name but what he is.” MARTIAN. “What then is his name?” ACACIUS. “Jesus Christ.” Martian having inquired of the saint by what woman God had his son, he replied, that the divine generation of the Word is of a different nature from human generation, and proved it from the language the royal prophet makes use of in the forty-fourth psalm. MARTIAN. “Is God then corporeal?” ACACIUS. “He is known only to himself. We cannot describe him; he is invisible to us in this mortal state, but we are sufficiently acquainted with his perfections to confess and adore him.” MARTIAN. “If God had no body, how can he have a heart or mind?” ACACIUS. “Wisdom hath no dependence or necessary connexion with an organized body. What hath body to do with understanding?” He then pressed him to sacrifice from the example of the Cataphrygians, or Montanists, and engage all under his care to do the same. Acacius replied: “It is not me these people obey but God. Let them hear me when I advise them to what is right; but let them despise me, if I offer them the contrary and endeavour to pervert them.” MARTIAN. “Give me all their names.” ACACIUS. “They are written in heaven, in God’s invisible registers.” MARTIAN. “Where are the magicians, your companions, and the teachers of this cunningly devised error?” by which he probably meant the priests. ACACIUS. “No one in the world abhors magic more than we Christians.” MARTIAN. “Magic is the new religion which you introduce.” ACACIUS. “We destroy those gods whom you fear though you made them yourselves. We, on the contrary, fear not him whom we have made with our hands, but him who created us, and who is the Lord and Master of all nature; who loved us as our good father, and redeemed us from death and hell as the careful and affectionate shepherd of our souls.” MARTIAN. “Give the names I require, if you would avoid the torture.” ACACIUS. “I am before the tribunal, and do you ask me my name, and, not satisfied with that, you must also know those of the other ministers? Do you hope to conquer many; you, whom I alone am able thus to confound. If you desire to know our names, mine is Acacius. If you would know more, they call me Agathangelus, and my two companions are Piso, bishop of the Trojans, and Menander, a priest. Do now what you please.” MARTIAN. “You shall remain in prison, till the emperor is acquainted with what has passed on this subject, and sends his orders concerning you.”

The emperor Decius having read the interrogatory, recompensed Martian by making him governor of Pamphilia, but admired so much the prudence and constancy of Acacius, that he ordered him to be discharged, and suffered him to profess the Christian religion.

This his glorious confession is dated on the 29th of March, and happened under Decius in 250, or 251. How long Saint Acacius survived does not appear. The Greeks, Egyptians, and other oriental Churches, honour his name on the 31st of March; though his name occurs not in the Roman Martyrology. See his authentic acts in Ruinart, p. 152. Tillemont. t. 2. p. 357. Fleury, t. 2. Ceillier, t. 3. p. 560.

Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume III: March. The Lives of the Saints.  1866.

Bienheureux CHRISTOPHER ROBINSON, prêtre et martyr



Bienheureux Christophe Robinson, prêtre et martyr

Né vers 1565 à Woodsite en Angleterre, il fit ses études de théologie à Douai et à Reims. Ordonné prêtre le 24 février 1592, il retourne en Angleterre où il est témoin du martyr de saint John Boste dont il écrit le récit. Arrêté le 4 mars 1597, martyrisé, la corde aurait cassé deux fois avant de le pendre à la troisième fois, en 1597.

SOURCE : http://www.paroisse-saint-aygulf.fr/index.php/prieres-et-liturgie/saints-par-mois/icalrepeat.detail/2015/03/31/14531/-/bienheureux-christophe-robinson-pretre-et-martyr

Bienheureux Christophe Robinson

Prêtre et martyr en Angleterre (+ 1597)

Né vers 1565 à Woodsite en Angleterre, il fit ses études de théologie à Douai et à Reims. Ordonné prêtre le 24 février 1592, il retourne en Angleterre où il est témoin du martyre de saint John Boste dont il écrit le récit. Arrêté le 4 mars 1597, martyrisé, la corde aurait cassé deux fois avant de le pendre à la troisième fois. Il a été béatifié le 22 novembre 1987 par Jean-Paul II.

Commémoraison du bienheureux Christophe Robinson, prêtre et martyr, qui fut témoin du martyre de saint Jean Boste, et fut lui-même, sous la reine Élisabeth Ière, pour la seule cause de son sacerdoce, mené au gibet, un jour non précisé de 1597.

Martyrologe romain


Ven. Christopher Robinson

Born at Woodside, near Westward, Cumberland, date unknown; executed at Carlisle, 19 Aug., 1598. He was admitted to the English College at Reims in 1589, and was ordained priest and sent on the mission in 1592. Two years later he was a witness of the condemnation and execution of the venerable martyr John Boste at Durham, and wrote a very graphic account of this, which has been printed from a seventeenth-century transcript in the first volume of the "Catholic Record Society's Publications" (London, 1905), pp. 85-92. His labours seem to have been mainly in Cumberland and Westmoreland; but nothing is known about them. Eventually he was arrested and imprisoned at Carlisle, where Bishop Robinson, who may have been a relative, did his best to persuade him to save his life by conforming, under 27 Eliz., c. 2, for being a priest and coming into the realm, suffered the last penalty with such cheerful constancy that his death was the occasion of many conversions.

Wainewright, John. "Ven. Christopher Robinson." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 13. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1912. 30 Mar. 2015 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13099b.htm>.

Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Christine J. Murray.
Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. February 1, 1912. Remy Lafort, D.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.
Copyright © 2020 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.


Blessed Christopher Robinson, the Carlisle Martyr

Blessed Christopher Robinson was executed at Carlisle on August 19, 1598. The model above reflects the circumstances of his martyrdom, as the rope on which he was to be hung kept breaking! According to this website

Christopher Robinson is on all the ancient lists of those martyred during the Reformation, but his life is still little known. Nevertheless, his memory has never been effaced in Cumberland, of which he is the only Catholic martyr. His death evidently made a deep impression especially in his native Carlisle.

Christopher Robinson was probably born at Woodside, near Carlisle, between 1565 and 1570. He was admitted as a student with six others on 17 August 1590 at Douai as a student. This college had been founded on 29 September 1568 by William Allen, a former Oxford Professor and later Cardinal. The first four priests were sent to England in 1574, and in the next ten years just over a hundred left the College ordained for the English Mission. From 1568 to 1594 the College was re-settled beside the university of Rheims and it was during this period that Christopher Robinson was a student of the College.

He was at once entered for theological studies and was given the tonsure and first Minor Orders on 18 August 1590. Such was the urgent need for priests that the College had been granted a general dispensation to shorten the usual six-year course of preparation for the priesthood. Christopher Robinson was given the remaining Minor Orders, together with the subdiaconate and diaconate, on the last three days of March 1591. On 24 February he was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal Philip Sega in his private chapel at Rheims. He departed for England on 1 September 1592.

Cumberland and probably part of Westmorland was to be his field of labour. In a list of 1596 he is described by name as ‘dwelling for the most part at Woodside nigh Carlisle in Cumberland’. The only house known with certainty to have been visited and used by him was Johnby Hall, the home of the Musgrave family, about six miles from Penrith, near Greystoke Castle.

He would surely have known John Boste, a native of Dufton, near Appleby, who was the most hunted priest in the northern counties. He was eventually captured near Brancepeth, County Durham, on 13 September 1593. Christopher Robinson heard of his capture and, feeling sure no one would recognise him, rode over to attend his trial. Afterwards he wrote a detailed account of the trial and death of John Boste. This is a unique, first hand evidence of a martyrdom, hardly paralleled elsewhere.

He himself was arrested three and a half years later on 4 March 1597. A letter by Fr. Henry Garnett SJ dated 7 April 1597 states:

‘One Robinson, a seminary priest, was lately in a purchased gaol-delivery hanged at Carlisle. The rope broke twice and the third time he rebuked the sheriff for cruelty saying that, although he meant no way to yield but was glad of the combat, yet flesh and blood were weak, and therefore he showed little humanity to torment a man for so long. And when they took order to put two ropes, then, said he, by this means I shall be longer a-dying, but it is no matter, I am willing to suffer all.’ 

Although the indictment upon which Christopher Robinson suffered is no longer to be found, there is abundant evidence that the cause of his death was his priesthood.

There is also much evidence that his memory as a martyr has been persistently held in honour in Carlisle, where Christopher Robinson’s name is not only remembered but also invoked as a true martyr.

He was declared Blessed by Pope John Paul II in 1987. Lancaster Cathedral celebrates his martyrdom on the Feast of the Lancaster Martyrs, August 7.

Blessed Christopher Robinson

Profile

Studied in Douai and Rheims, France beginning in 1590. Ordained 24 February 1592. Returned to England in September 1592 to covertly minister to oppressed Catholics in the areas of Cumberland and Westmoreland. He witnessed the martyrdom of Saint John Boste, and published an account of it. Arrested 4 March 1597 for the crime of priesthood. Martyred for his crime; the hanging rope broke twice, so they used two ropes on the third, successful attempt. One of the Martyrs of England, Scotland, and Wales.


SOURCE : http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-christopher-robinson/

Beato Cristoforo Robinson Martire



Woodside, Inghilterra, 1568 circa - Carlisle, Inghilterra, 31 marzo 1598

Martirologio Romano: A Carlisle in Inghilterra, commemorazione del beato Cristoforo Robinson, sacerdote e martire, che fu testimone del martirio di san Giovanni Boste e infine, condotto al patibolo in un giorno imprecisato durante il regno di Elisabetta I sempre per il solo fatto di essere sacerdote, ricevette egli stesso la palma del martirio. 

SOURCE : http://www.santiebeati.it/dettaglio/47980

Saint GUIDO di POMPOSA (GUY), abbé bénédictin et confesseur


Saint Guy de Pomposa, abbé

Natif de Ravenne, il reçut la tonsure à Rome et alla vivre sur les rives du Pô, avec un ermite nommé Martin. Il fut élu par la suite abbé de Saint-Sévère puis du monastère de Pomposa, près de Ferrare, en Émilie-Romagne, et y mena une vie toute d’austérité. L’abbaye de Pomposa, fondée aux VIe-VIIe siècle par les bénédictins, sur ce qui était à l’époque une île, devint sous sa conduite un des plus importants monastères de l’Italie du Nord. Il mourut en 1046. L’abbaye connut un grand rayonnement surtout au Xe et au XIIe siècle, c’est là notamment que le moine Guy d’Arezzo (992-1050) mit au point la notation musicale avec l’acrostiche de l’hymne de Paul Diacre à saint Jean Baptiste : « Ut queant laxis / Resonare fibris / Mira gestorum / Famuli tuorum / Solve poluuti / Labii reatum / Sancte Iohannes ».

SOURCE : http://www.paroisse-saint-aygulf.fr/index.php/prieres-et-liturgie/saints-par-mois/icalrepeat.detail/2015/03/31/5785/-/saint-guy-de-pomposa-abbe

Relic of Guido di Pomposa, Speyer Cathedral, Speyer, Germany 


Saint Guy de Pomposa

Moine puis abbé à Ravenne (+ 1046)

Né aux environs de Ravenne, il vécut d'abord sous la direction d'un ermite qui l'envoya à l'abbaye de Pomposa dont il devint l'abbé. Sa sainteté lui attira de nombreux disciples et fit de son monastère l'un des plus importants de l'Italie du Nord.

À Borgo San Domnino, dans la région de Parme en Émilie, l’an 1046, le trépas de saint Guy, abbé du monastère de Pompose, qui accueillit de nombreux disciples, reconstruisit les bâtiments, veilla au plus haut point à la contemplation et au culte divin, et voulut être tout entier à Dieu seul dans la retraite.

Martyrologe romain


Relic of Guido di Pomposa, Speyer Cathedral, Speyer, Germany 



Guy of Pomposa, OSB Abbot M (AC)

(also known as Guido, Guion, Wido, Witen, Wit)

Born near Ravenna, Italy; died 1046. San Guido's parents were proud of their son. He was extremely careful with his appearance and dress in order to please them, until the day he realized that it was a form of vanity. On the feast of Saint Apollinaris, the first bishop of Ravenna, Guy went into town, stripped off his finery, and traded them for the rags of the poor. His horrified parents then watched as he left on a pilgrimage to Rome thus dressed.

In Rome, he was tonsured and placed himself under the direction of a hermit, named Martin, who lived on an island in the Po River. After three years, Martin sent him to the monastery of Pomposa (near Ferrara), which was under Martin's direction together with that of Ferrara, to learn the monastic life in a large community. Thus, Guy began monastic life and became a Benedictine monk at the abbey of Saint Severus.

Later Guy was nominated by Martin and was confirmed by vote of the community as abbot of Ravenna, then of Pomposa near Ferrara. He loved sacred learning and, at his request, Saint Peter Damian delivered lectures on the Scriptures to his monks for two years. Saint Peter Damian later dedicated his book, De perfectione monachorum, to the holy abbot. During his forty years as abbot, Guy's reputation drew so many others to religious life, including his own father and brother, that the community doubled in size and another monastery had to be built to accommodate them all. Eventually, he delegated the administrative aspects of his office in order to concentrate on the spiritual, especially the direction of souls.

Three times annually he made a retreat in a hermitage three-miles from Ferrara, where he lived in silence, abstinence, fasting, and prayer. His devotions and austerities were heightened during Lent. Although he treated his own body severely, he was extraordinarily tender with his monks, who became devoted to him.

Towards the end of his life, Guy was fiercely, though unjustly, persecuted by Archbishop Heribert of Ravenna and retired again into solitude. His peace was broken, however, by an summons to Piacenza from Emperor Henry III, who had come to Italy and wished to consult the holy man whose reputation had reached the king's ears. Guy took leave of his brothers, saying that he would not see them again. He became ill at Borgo San Donnino (near Parma) and died within days. After his death, Parma and Pomposa vied for custody of his relics. The emperor settled the dispute by taking his remains to the Church of Saint John the Evangelist in Speyer, Germany, which was renamed Saint Guido-Stift. He is the patron of Speyer (Attwater2, Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth, Walsh).

SOURCE : http://www.saintpatrickdc.org/ss/0331.shtml

St. Guy, Confessor

HE is called by the Germans Witen, and was forty years abbot of Pomposa, in the duchy of Ferrara, in Italy, a man eminent in all virtues, especially patience, the love of solitude, and prayer. He died in 1046. The emperor, Henry III., caused his relics to be translated to Spire, which city honours him as its principal patron. See his life by a disciple, in the Acta Sanatorium of Henschenius, and another shorter, of the same age.

Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume III: March. The Lives of the Saints.  1866.

SOURCE : http://www.bartleby.com/210/3/313.html

Relic of Guido di Pomposa, Speyer Cathedral, Speyer, Germany 


Saint Guy of Pomposa

Also known as
  • Guido
  • Guion
  • Wido
  • Wit
  • Witen
Profile

Known in his youth for being meticulous about his clothing and appearance – until the day he realized it was simply vanity and traded his fine clothes for a beggar‘s rags. Pilgrim to Rome, Italy. Spiritual student for three years of a hermit name Martin on an island in the River Po. Monk at Pomposa abbey near Ferrera, Italy. Benedictine monk at Saint Severus abbey, Ravenna, Italy. Abbot at Ravenna. Abbot at Pomposa. A student of scripture, at the request of Saint Peter Damian he taught Bible studies for two years. So many were attracted to his teaching, his leadership, and his example of the Christian life that his house doubled in size; his father and brother joined the order. Guy finally handed off the administrative elements of his position to concentrate on spiritual direction. He periodically retreated to a hermitage near Ferrara to spend his days in prayer and fasting. Near the end of his life he was unjustly persecuted for personal reasons by archbishop Heribert of Ravenna. Died while on a trip to Piacenza, Italy to advise Emperor Henry III on spiritual matters.

Born


St. Guy of Pomposa

When he was a young man Guy of Pomposa had a very high opinion of himself and always dressed very well. During a celebration of the feast of St Apollinaris in Italy, he realized that he should change his attitude toward himself in order to improve his life spiritually. He gave his fine clothing to the poor and began to wear the clothes of a poor man. He then spent three years with a hermit, and he became a member and later abbot of a monastery that was under the direction of the hermit. He spent many hours a day praying and fasting, and his life became such an inspiring example that many men joined the monastery. His guidance was sought by many important people over the years. We honor him on March 31. - 


Saints of the Order of Saint Benedict – Saint Guy, Abbot

Almighty God very often manifests His goodness and mercy in pointing out the error of their ways to those who pursue the paths of pleasure and luxury. This mercy was shown to Saint Guy. He was born at Casmarius, a hamlet near Ravenna, of good family, his parents being Albert and Martia. Their indulgence, coupled with the fire of youth, nearly brought their son to ruin. While studying at Ravenna, he fell in love. Dancing, singing, rich banquets, and the society of the opposite sex were all he lived for. He was going straight to perdition, when, all of a sudden, Divine Providence mercifully opened his eyes to the abyss yawning in front of him. The sense of his peril now made him shrink with loathing from what he previously had found so alluring.

In the meantime his father had arranged a marriage alliance for him. To avoid this, Guy secretly left Ravenna, and clad in coarse garments escaped to Rome. There, after a regular course of study, he obtained Holy Orders. It was then his intention to proceed to Jerusalem and never to see Italy again; but it was otherwise decreed by the Almighty. The Divine Command bade him return to his native country, and join Martin, a holy anchorite, who was living on the confines of the territory of Ravenna. For three years he lived the solitary life under the direction of Martin.

Such was the esteem in which Guy was held owing to the humility and sanctity of his life, that, on the death of William, Abbot of Pomposa, he was chosen to succeed him. Under the new Abbot’s rule strict discipline flourished at Pomposa, so that it was as if Saint Benedict had come to life again. The devout thronged to the monastery to place themselves under Saint Guy’s spiritual guidance. Even his father and his brother, Gerard, were induced to leave the world and to don the cowl.

As the community was increasing in numbers every day, it became necessary to erect additional buildings. While this work was proceeding, several miracles were performed through the prayers of the holy Abbot. One of the workmen, while walking carelessly along the beams of the scaffolding, missed his footing, and, by Saint Guy’s intercession, was saved from being hurled lifeless to the earth. Owing to the same powerful mediation, no injury befell some monks who were dashed to the ground by blocks of hewn stone that had fallen through the giving way of some portion of the tackle. While the Abbot was energetically hurrying on the new monastery, his resources became exhausted. He had not wherewithal to feed his labourers. However, God did not forsake him. Soon after two ships, laden with corn, put into the coast adjoining the monastery and gave him abundance of provisions. It was not men’s bodies only that our Saint was concerned for, but much more for their souls. A monk who lived in a cell not far from Pomposa was carried off by a sudden seizure. Owing to his carelessness in the matter of penance, this monk’s soul ran the risk of being lost. Guy’s prayers restored him to life, that he might have time to make his peace with Heaven. Three days later, when he had piously confessed his sins and had been absolved, this monk died happily.

Saint Guy was now advanced in years, when the Emperor Henry, on his entrance from Germany into Italy, commanded him to the imperial presence. On setting out, the Abbot told his sorrowing brethren that Pomposa would never again see him alive. This prophecy came true. While on his journey he fell ill at Parma, and there died, A.D. 1046.

His remains, which at first were interred at Parma, were transferred by the Emperor to Verona, and later on to Spires, of which city he is still one of the chief patrons.

– text and illustration taken from Saints of the Order of Saint Benedict by Father Aegedius Ranbeck, O.S.B.

SOURCE : https://catholicsaints.info/saints-of-the-order-of-saint-benedict-saint-guy-abbot/

San Guido di Pomposa Abate

31 marzo

Nativo di Casamari presso Ravenna, nella seconda metà del X secolo, da giovane si dedicò agli studi vivendo negli agi della vita di famiglia. La sua vita ebbe una svolta quando decise di donare i suoi abiti ai poveri e di ricoprirsi di un saio. Fece un pellegrinaggio a Roma e da lì in Terra Santa; ma una volta tornato a Ravenna si ritirò a vita eremitica sotto la guida dell'eremita Martino, abate di Pomposa, di cui fu successore nel 998. Sotto la sua guida il monastero conobbe un periodo florido, sia nell'ingrandimento edilizio, sia per il gran numero di monaci presenti. Collaborò con l'arcivescovo Gebeardo alla riforma ecclesiastica, favorì le nuove teorie sul campo musicale liturgico, ebbe fra i suoi monaci anche Guido d'Arezzo, inventore del pentagramma. Aderendo all'invito dell'imperatore Enrico III di recarsi a Piacenza, non poté raggiungere il luogo: malato dovette fermarsi a Borgo San Donnino, dove morì il 31 marzo 1046.

Etimologia: Guido = istruito, dall'antico tedesco

Martirologio Romano: A Borgo San Donnino presso Parma, san Guido, abate del monastero di Pomposa, che, dopo avere radunato molti discepoli e ricostruiti edifici sacri, si dedicò con fervore alla preghiera, alla contemplazione e al culto divino e nell’eremo volle avere la mente rivolta solo a Dio.

Nato presso Ravenna, nella seconda metà del X secolo, da giovane si dedicò agli studi vivendo negli agi della vita di famiglia. La sua vita ebbe una svolta quando decise di donare i suoi abiti ai poveri e di ricoprirsi di un saio. Fece un pellegrinaggio a Roma dove ricevette la tonsura e da lì in Terra Santa; ma una volta tornato a Ravenna si ritirò a vita eremitica sotto la guida dell'eremita Martino, abate di Pomposa, di cui fu successore nel 998. Sotto la sua guida il monastero conobbe un periodo florido, sia nell'ingrandimento edilizio, sia per il gran numero di monaci presenti. Collaborò con l'arcivescovo Gebeardo alla riforma ecclesiastica, favorì le nuove teorie sul campo musicale liturgico, ebbe fra i suoi monaci anche Guido d'Arezzo, inventore del pentagramma. Aderendo all'invito dell'imperatore Enrico III di recarsi a Piacenza, non poté raggiungere il luogo: malato dovette fermarsi a Borgo San Donnino, dove morì il 31 marzo 1046.

La vita

Guido nacque da famiglia agiata, detta degli “Strambiati”, imparentata con la famiglia imperiale dei Salici, tra il 965 ed il 970, a Casamari, nei pressi di Ravenna. Compi studi di Diritto, Architettura e Musica.

Ma, anziché sposarsi, come desiderava per lui la famiglia, la sua vita ebbe una svolta quando decise di donare i suoi abiti ai poveri e di ricoprirsi di un saio. Fece un pellegrinaggio a Roma dove ricevette la tonsura e da lì in Terra Santa; ma una volta tornato a Ravenna si ritirò a vita eremitica sotto la guida dell'eremita Martino, abate di Pomposa, di cui fu successore nel 998.

Sotto la sua guida il monastero conobbe un periodo florido, sia nell'ingrandimento edilizio, sia per il gran numero di monaci presenti. Collaborò con l'arcivescovo Gebeardo alla riforma ecclesiastica, favorì le nuove teorie sul campo musicale liturgico, ebbe fra i suoi monaci anche Guido d'Arezzo, inventore del pentagramma. Aderendo all'invito dell'imperatore Enrico III di recarsi a Piacenza, non poté raggiungere il luogo: malato dovette fermarsi a Borgo San Donnino, dove morì il 31 marzo 1046.

Guido diede vita ad una disciplina monastica “originale”, definita Ordo Pomposianus: l’eremo, da sempre più alto grado di esercizio della vita monastica, non prevaleva sul cenobio; l’abate, eletto dagli eremiti, doveva risiedere nel cenobio e quest’ultimo aveva un ruolo proprio, nel quale al monaco era consentito di esercitare a pieno la sua vocazione spirituale, senza passare dall’eremo.

Pomposa è stato un importante centro di Riforma della vita monastica in Italia, della quale San Guido fu il principale ispiratore e artefice. Durante il suo abbaziato, l’osservanza monastica prese vigore, aumentando fortemente il numero delle vocazioni. Il numero dei monaci, durante il periodo di permanenza presso la comunità di San Pier Damiani, chiamato a istruirli, era superiore a cento. Si devono poi a San Guido le grandi opere di rifacimento del monastero e di ampliamento della chiesa.

Pomposa divenne il Monasterium in Italia primum: l’alta spiritualità raggiunta dal cenobio ed il forte carisma esercitato dall’Abate Guido, attirarono sul monastero l’ammirazione di imperatori, vescovi e signori, tar i quali si ricorda Bonifacio di Marchese di Toscana e padre di Matilde di Canossa, che in San Guido ebbe il suo confessore.

La traslazione

Il 31 marzo 1046 la morte sorprese l’abate Guido lontano da Pomposa, mentre era in viaggio verso Pavia, precisamente a Borgo san Donnino (attuale Fidenza), città dove Enrico III aveva convocato un Sinodo di vescovi e abati: i due monaci che lo avevano accompagnato si stavano preparando a riportare la salma a Pomposa, ma giunti a Parma, al verificarsi di alcuni miracoli, il corpo fu trattenuto fino all’intervento di Enrico III, il quale informato dell’accaduto, decise di trasferire il corpo in San Zeno a Verona. Enrico III, al rientro da Roma, dopo aver risolto una delicatissima questione (tre papi si contendevano il soglio pontificio), aver ridato unità alla Chiesa ed essere stato incoronato Imperatore, volle con sé il corpo del Santo per portarlo nella città di Spira. Il 4 maggio del 1047, giorno della Pentecoste, il corpo di San Guido fu deposto in un sarcofago di marmo sul quale fu scolpita la frase HID REQUIESCAT CORPUS S. GUIDONIS ABBATIS e trasferito nella Chiesa di San Giovanni, Patrono della città e divenuta Chiesa di San Guido.

Nel 1689, con la distruzione della città e anche della chiesa, le reliquie furono portate provvisoriamente in un luogo sicuro, all’interno del Duomo cittadino. Nel 1750 la Chiesa di San Giovanni venne ricostruita e le reliquie riportate e collocate sull’altare maggiore, ma poi nel 1794, con l’ingresso dei soldati francesi portati dalla Rivoluzione, la chiesa fu saccheggiata, e i resti del Santo furono dispersi “… tra l’avena ammucchiata sul pavimento …”. Grazie all’intervento notturno delle pietose e intrepide suore del vicino convento di santa Maria Maddalena, fu possibile recuperare parte dei resti e metterli in salvo nelle chiesa del loro monastero.

Nel 1930, parte delle reliquie recuperate (le due tibie), furono riportate nella chiesa di San Guido, diventata nel frattempo parte del Collegio missionario dei Padri Spiritani. Verso la fine del Novecento, a causa di una profonda crisi vocazionale, i Padri Spiritani dovettero abbandonare la loro missione, la chiesa di San Guido venne sconsacrata e le reliquie, in attesa di una nuova definitiva collocazione furono portate provvisoriamente nella cappella privata del Vescovo.

Il ricordo

Nel 1997 un gruppo di parroci tedeschi di Spira in visita a Pomposa, fu informato da una guida turistica della richiesta, mai esaudita, riguardante la restituzione delle spoglie di san Guido alla sua cara Abbazia. Il gruppo era guidato da Don Giuliano Gandini, sacerdote veronese, parroco della comunità italiana a Spira: i sacerdoti, ritornati nella città tedesca, informarono immediatamente del fatto il Vescovo della città, Dr. Anton Schlembach, il quale, avvertendo un antico e profondo legame con Pomposa, accolse entusiasticamente la richiesta.

Così il 19 novembre del 2000, la reliquia di San Guido, portata solennemente dal Vescovo Schlembach, dai parroci e da un numeroso gruppo di pellegrini spirensi, fece ingresso nell’Abbazia di Pomposa, dove ad accoglierli, nella chiesa gremita di fedeli, erano presenti l’allora Vescovo di Ferrara-Comacchio e Abate di Pomposa, Mons. Carlo Caffarra e il vescovo Emerito di Ravenna Mons. Luigi Amaducci.
Oggi una tibia si trova nella cappella di Santa Caterina nel Duomo di Spira e l’altra nella navata sinistra dell’Abbazia di Pomposa.

La reliquia

La reliquia di San Guido è contenuta in uno scrigno realizzato dall’orafo di Würzburg, Michael Amberg e dalla moglie Fides. Essa riposa su seta blu indiana, lavorata con fili e ricami d’oro, ornata con 12 grosse stelle a fiore, perle d’acqua dolce e di mare, sfere d’oro indiane con piastrine dorate e punzonate, incorniciata come nel giardino celeste. La stessa reliquia è ornata con piccoli fiori celesti e avvolta con una benda di pergamena con testo a inchiostro colorato. Il lato superiore e le parti laterali del reliquiario racchiudono con ghirlande di frutti, le chiese dedicate a Maria: la Cattedrale di Spira e l’Abbazia di Pomposa.

Il testo inciso recita: EX OSSIBUS SANCTI GUIDONIS ABBATIS A.D. 2000 DONUM DIOCESIS SPIRENSIS (Osso di tibia dello scheletro del Santo Abate Guido Anno del Signore 2000, dono della Diocesi di Spira).

Autore: Antonio Borrelli

SOURCE : http://www.santiebeati.it/dettaglio/90844

Voir aussi : http://christdesert.org/cgi-bin/martyrology.dynamic.5.cgi?name=guy_of_pomposa