This week we celebrate one of the most unique feasts in the Church calendar, the circumcision of Jesus. This date comes from the Bible as well since in Luke’s Gospel it says that eight days after his birth Jesus was circumcised. As per Jewish tradition the child is circumcised and given a name eight days after birth. The feast itself isn’t popular in the Catholic church as January 1 is the feast of Mary the Mother of God (A holy day of obligation), and is celebrated on January 3 at the feast of the Holy Name of Jesus.
Onto the saints:
Saint Trophimus of Arles (3rd Century)
According to lore Trophimus was the first bishop of Arles being one of the seven bishops sent by Pope Fabian into Gaul\France. In the 5th century the people of Arles combined Trophimus with the Trophimus, disciple of Paul found in the Acts of the Apostles. The church in Arles dedicated to Trophime (Trophimus) is an important example of the Romanesque style and the sculpture of the Last Judgement and columns in the cloister are considered to be the finest examples of Romanesque sculpture in the world.
Saint Telemachus or Almachus or Tilemahos (d. January 1 391 or 404)
Telemachus is an interesting story it is said that one time Telemachus, a monk, tried to stop a gladiatorial fight at an amphitheater and was stoned to death by the crowd. Emperor Honorius, heard about this and he issued a dan on gladiatorial fights, the last known gladiator fight took place in 404 so the later date may be the more accurate one. Ronald Reagan mentioned Telemachus in 1984 at the Annual National Prayer Breakfast. I think that it is a shame that stories like Telemachus are lost to time or just fade away. If only people in politics took this message to hear and did things for the betterment of all people and not just those in they represent.
Macarius of Alexandria known as the Younger (c. 300 -395)
Macarius was a monk in the Natron Valley which is known for the Desert Fathers and Mothers. Macarius was a merchant until about he was 40 when he was baptized and went off into the desert. After a few year he was ordained a priest and named prior of some of the other monks. He learned Pachomios the Great rule and it is said that once during Lent he disguised himself in secular clothing at Pachomios’s monastery and didn’t eat of drink a thing for the 40 day. The story goes on that he just stood there making baskets from palm leaves. The monks went of Pachomios and asked that this man be “cast out for he is not human” Then Macarius was revealed to them all and having demonstrated humility and taught them a lesson Macarius left. At 73 he was exiled to an island where he and Macarius the older from Egypt which they then Christianized.
Genevieve (c. 419/422 – 502/512)
“Saint Genevieve, Saint Genevieve, it’s Gwenivere remember me.” This was the extent of what I knew about Genevieve from that song from Camelot. In the Hagiography we hear that Genevieve met with Germanus of Auxerre while he stopped in her town on the way to England and Genevieve confided to him that she only wanted to live for God. At 15 she became a nun. After the deaths of her parents Genevieve moved to Paris where she lived with her godmother. In Paris she became known for her piety and works of charity. Genevieve was also a vegetarian who only eat supper twice a week, and would do other types of mortification as well. She also had visions and it is said that she prevented the Huns from sacking Paris as she encouraged the whole town to pray. The Huns would go and attack Orleans. Genevieve is the Patron of Paris.