Saints Cyril, Monk and Methodius, Bishop

Have you ever noticed that our Saints seem to run in the same circles as other saints?  This weeks Saints of the Week, Saint Cyril and his brother Saint Methodius certainly bolstered each others lives of holiness.  Born in 9th century Greece, the brothers embarked on a life of missionary activity, evangelizing what would eventually become Christian Europe.  

In about the year 860, the brothers were commissioned by the Emperor in Constantinople to lead a missionary crew heading into what is today’s Czech Republic, which was as much of a political and religious maelstrom then, as it remains today.  The unique and varied languages spoken in the area were not written down and contributed to the confusion and divisions among the native peoples.  Saint Cyril is best known for creating the Slavonic alphabet.  Then he and Methodius set about translating sacred scripture, liturgical books, and a Slavonic Liturgy for the Mass.  This turned into a major controversy in the Roman Church because unlike the Eastern Churches, who had always celebrated the liturgy in local languages, Rome had heretofore only celebrated the Mass in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin, the languages inscribed above Christ’s head on the cross.  Saint’s Cyril and Methodius travelled to Rome and obtained the blessing for their new liturgy by Pope Adrian II.  Perhaps their example can serve as balm for the wounds caused by the implementation of Vatican II in the American Church.

Feast day:  Friday, February 14th 

Patrons of: Europe, Slavic Peoples, Ecumenism

Prayer to Saints Cyril and Methodius:

Saints Cyril and Methodius, you prepared yourselves for brave and generous service to Christ and His Church through long years of preparation and, when the time came, served heroically. May we so prepare, and so serve, until we can serve no more.  Amen. 

Saints Cyril and Methodius, pray for us!

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