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Saint Vincent of Saragossa, Deacon and Martyr ^ | unknown | Catholic Forum

Posted on 01/22/2005 8:37:08 AM PST by Salvation

VINCENT of Saragossa

Also known as
Vincent of Zaragoza; Vincent the Deacon; Vincent Tourante; Vincent of Aragon
22 January
Friend of Saint Valerius of Saragossa in Spain, and served as his deacon. Imprisoned and tortured in Valencia, some of it by burning on a gridiron, for his faith. Converted the jailer. Was finally offered release if he would give up the sacred texts to the fire, but he refused. Martyred during the persecutions of Diocletian. Acts written by the poet Prudentius.
at Heusca
martyred c.304 at Valencia
Portugal, vine dressers, vinegar makers, vintners, wine growers, wine makers

deacon holding a ewer; deacon holding several ewers and a book; deacon with a raven; deceased deacon whose body is being defended by ravens; deacon being torn by hooks; deacon holding a millstone
Gallery of images of Saint Vincent

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KEYWORDS: aragon; catholic; catholiclist; saragossa; stvincent
"To you has been granted in Christ's behalf not only that you should believe in him but also that you should suffer for him."

Vincent had received both these gifts and held them as his own. For how could he have them if he had not received them? And he displayed his faith in what he said, his endurance in what he suffered.

No one ought to be confident in his own strength when he undergoes temptation. For whenever we endure evils courageously, our long-suffering comes from him Christ.

He once said to his disciples: "In this world you will suffer persecution," and then, to allay their fears, he added, "but rest assured, I have conquered the world."

There is no need to wonder then, my dearly beloved brothers, that Vincent conquered in him who conquered the world. It offers temptation to lead us astray; it strikes terror into us to break out spirit.

Hence if our personal pleasures do not hold us captive, and if we are not frightened by brutality, then the world is overcome. At both of these approaches Christ rushes to our aid, and the Christian is not conquered.

from a sermon by Saint Augustine of Hippo

1 posted on 01/22/2005 8:37:08 AM PST by Salvation
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To: Salvation

Vincent of Saragossa

Vincent of Saragossa Born: unknown

Died: c.304


Feast Day: January 22

Patron Saint of: vintners, winegrowers

Vincent of Saragossa is the earliest known Spanish martyr. It is said that he was brought to trial by the governor Dacian along with his bishop Valerius, and that since Valerius had a speech impediment, Vincent spoke for both. His fearless manner so angered Dacian that Vincent was horribly tortured and killed; his aged bishop was only exiled.

As the legend goes, Vincent's corpse was thrown into a bog to be torn apart by wild, hungry animals. Witnesses say that a bird, a raven, protected the saint's remains fighting off all of the beasts that dared to try to feast.


2 posted on 01/22/2005 8:38:29 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: All

Vincent of Saragossa, Deacon M (RM)

(also known as Vincent of Aragon)

Born in Huesca, Spain; died January 22, 304.

Vincent was educated and ordained a deacon by Bishop Saint Valerius of Saragossa with the commission to preach (White). (Gill confusingly says: "As a young priest he served Valerius, Bishop of Saragossa, and after a time became his archdeacon." Is it possible that at the time a presbyter could become a deacon? Deacons did have more power at the time because the faculties necessary for most sacraments had not yet been delegated to the presbyters; deacons held the purse- strings.)

The ancient legend, but not an eyewitness account, relates that the governor Dacian was doing his utmost to stamp out Christianity in his domain. He killed 18 believers in Saragossa in 303. It was during these persecutions under Emperor Diocletian, that Vincent, the bishop, and the priests were arrested, led away in chains, and imprisoned in Valencia. Because Valerius suffered from a speech impediment, Vincent acted as his spokesman and, on behalf of them all, boldly declared their allegiance to Christ. Saint Valerius was exiled and later may have died as a martyr.

Vincent underwent terrible tortures; he had resisted turning over his church's sacred books, and sacrificing to false gods. He was stretched upon a rack, torn with metal hooks, and laid upon a frame of sharp iron bars heated from beneath by fire. When even this diabolic cruelty failed to break his will, he was thrown into a dungeon the floor of which was strewn with broken crockery that added to the agony of his already lacerated body.

Vincent declared that God sent the angels of heaven to comfort him. His cell, he said, was illuminated with a heavenly light, and might have been filled with roses (the gift of scent), so sweet was its fragrance. He sang hymns as he suffered, so that even the jailer was astounded. As he looked into the cell of the tormented saint and saw him upon his broken knees, suffering agony yet singing praises to God, he was overcome by wonder, and confessed in that hour his conversion.

On hearing this, the Roman governor was infuriated, but finding all his efforts to unnerve his victim were useless, gave orders for the torture to stop--perhaps to win Vincent by clemency or to prevent him from becoming a martyr.

For a time Vincent had some relief. The faithful were permitted to gaze upon his broken body, probably in the hope that they would abandon their faith. Instead, they came in troops, kissed the open sores, and carried away as relics cloths dipped in his blood. The gentle hands of Christian women tended his wounds. But he did not survive long and died of his injuries in prison in 304 or 305.

When he died, the anger of the authorities was renewed and followed him to his grave. His body was thrown into a bog as prey to the wild birds and beasts, but it was strangely preserved it is said by the protection of a raven. When any wild beast or bird tried to attack the mortal remains of the saint, the raven drove them away. Thwarted, Dacian had Vincent's body tied to a stone and cast into the sea. But in the night it was washed ashore, and again loving hands gave it reverent care and secret burial. Relics were claimed by Valencia, Saragossa, Lisbon (the Augustinian monastery), Paris, and Le Mans.

He was the protomartyr of Spain. There can be no doubt of Vincent martyrdom; however, there is plenty of room for speculation on the manner of his death. Prudentius devoted a poem to his praise and embroidered acts of his martyrdom have been preserved. The fame of Saint Vincent spread very rapidly and far, as Saint Augustine testifies, in a sermon, that his cultus extended to every part of the Roman Empire and everywhere the name of Jesus was known.

Several churches in England were dedicated to his honor in the Middle Ages. Vincent is listed in the Old English Martyrology and many pre-Conquest calendars. Abingdon, which acquired many of his relics in the 12th century, graded his feast at the highest level to include an octave (Attwater, Benedictines, Bentley, Butler, Encyclopedia, Farmer, Gill, White).

Pictured as a deacon with a raven, sometimes on a millstone. On occasion he is shown (1) holding iron hook; (2) with a gridiron with spikes (not to be confused with Saint Lawrence); (3) torn with hooks, burned with torches; or (4) his corpse protected by eagles or ravens (Roeder). Click here to see a 14th- century French illumination.

He is the patron of bakers, roof-makers, sailors, schoolgirls, vine-dressers, vintners (Roeder), tile-makers, and roofers (Encyclopedia). The patron of vine-dressers and vintners may be due to the belief that he protects the fields against the frost that often occurs on or near his feast-day in Burgundy (Farmer).

3 posted on 01/22/2005 8:40:32 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Salvation
In the Orthodox Church, his memory is celebrated on November 11.

"As godly-minded athletes and Martyrs who strove for piety, the Church doth honour and glorify this day the godly contests and travails of Minas the prizewinner, noble Victor, brave Vincent, and valiant Stephanie, and lovingly doth cry out and glorify Christ, the Friend of man. " - Kontakion of Sts. Minas, Victor, Vincent and Stephanie

4 posted on 01/22/2005 10:26:26 AM PST by Kolokotronis (Nuke the Cube!)
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To: Kolokotronis
In my '62 Marian Missal this day also commemorates the memory of the Persian monk, St. Anastasius who was martyred along with 70 other Christians in A.D. 628. The Introit for this day is:

"Let the sighing of the prisoners come in before Thee, O Lord; render to our neighbors sevenfold in their bosom; revenge the blood of Thy Saints, which hath been shed."
"Oh God, the heathens are come into Thine inheritance; they have defiled Thy holy temple: they have made Jerusalem as a place to keep fruit."

Many times it's hard for me to distinguish between what I was taught are the true Characteristics of God, and those I want impose upon him. I mention that because I am predisposed to feeling comforted by the possibility of God's wrath.

5 posted on 01/22/2005 10:59:38 AM PST by AlbionGirl
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To: Kolokotronis

Alleluia to our Merciful Savior.

6 posted on 01/22/2005 3:55:15 PM PST by Ciexyz (I use the term Blue Cities, not Blue States. PA is red except for Philly, Pgh & Erie)
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To: Salvation


7 posted on 01/22/2005 9:11:46 PM PST by vox_freedom (Fear no evil)
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To: Kolokotronis

What a fantastic icon. I love it when you post these. We celebrate the same saints, just on different days.

8 posted on 01/22/2005 10:19:46 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: AlbionGirl

It is the feast day of St. Athanasius the Martyr in the Orthodox Church on January 22 also.

"Thy Martyr, O Lord, in his courageous contest for Thee received the prize of the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. For since he possessed Thy strength, he cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons' strengthless presumption. O Christ God, by his prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful.

First Tone

With hymns let us, the faithful, sing Timothy's praises as Paul's divine disciple and faithful companion; with him let us also laud Anastasius the godly-wise, who shone forth with splendor like a star out of Persia and doth drive away from us our bodily sickness and spiritual maladies."

There is a line of theology in Orthodoxy which speaks of God's wrath as always instructive. Kalomiros is an exponent of this view.

9 posted on 01/23/2005 5:10:19 AM PST by Kolokotronis (Nuke the Cube!)
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To: Salvation

It is a nice icon, isn't it. Its a modern one prayed by an American iconographer by the name of Nicholas Papas. We have a few of his icons here at home.

10 posted on 01/23/2005 5:12:57 AM PST by Kolokotronis (Nuke the Cube!)
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To: All
American Catholic’s Saint of the Day

January 22, 2007
St. Vincent
(d. 304)

When Jesus deliberately began his “journey” to death, Luke says that he “set his face” to go to Jerusalem. It is this quality of rocklike courage that distinguishes the martyrs.

Most of what we know about this saint comes from the poet Prudentius. His Acts have been rather freely colored by the imagination of their compiler. But St. Augustine, in one of his sermons on St. Vincent, speaks of having the Acts of his martyrdom before him. We are at least sure of his name, his being a deacon, the place of his death and burial.

According to the story we have (and as with some of the other early martyrs the unusual devotion he inspired must have had a basis in a very heroic life), Vincent was ordained deacon by his friend St. Valerius of Saragossa in Spain. The Roman emperors had published their edicts against the clergy in 303, and the following year against the laity. Vincent and his bishop were imprisoned in Valencia. Hunger and torture failed to break them. Like the youths in the fiery furnace (Book of Daniel, chapter three), they seemed to thrive on suffering.

Valerius was sent into exile, and Dacian now turned the full force of his fury on Vincent. Tortures that sound like those of World War II were tried. But their main effect was the progressive disintegration of Dacian himself. He had the torturers beaten because they failed.

Finally he suggested a compromise: Would Vincent at least give up the sacred books to be burned according to the emperor’s edict? He would not. Torture on the gridiron continued, the prisoner remaining courageous, the torturer losing control of himself. Vincent was thrown into a filthy prison cell—and converted the jailer. Dacian wept with rage, but strangely enough, ordered the prisoner to be given some rest.

Friends among the faithful came to visit him, but he was to have no earthly rest. When they finally settled him on a comfortable bed, he went to his eternal rest.


The martyrs are heroic examples of what God’s power can do. It is humanly impossible, we realize, for someone to go through tortures such as Vincent had and remain faithful. But it is equally true that by human power alone no one can remain faithful even without torture or suffering. God does not come to our rescue at isolated, “special” moments. God is supporting the supercruisers as well as children’s toy boats.


“Wherever it was that Christians were put to death, their executions did not bear the semblance of a triumph. Exteriorly they did not differ in the least from the executions of common criminals. But the moral grandeur of a martyr is essentially the same, whether he preserved his constancy in the arena before thousands of raving spectators or whether he perfected his martyrdom forsaken by all upon a pitiless flayer’s field” (The Roman Catacombs, Hertling-Kirschbaum).

11 posted on 01/22/2007 9:02:43 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: All
Another deacon who is a saint!

What You [Catholics] Need to Know: Deacons and the Diaconate[Catholic-Orthodox Caucus]

12 posted on 01/22/2008 9:08:51 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Kolokotronis

As opposed to St. Athanasius the Great correct? I was only aware of one St. Athanasius, and didn’t think he was martyred.

13 posted on 01/22/2008 9:18:45 PM PST by StAthanasiustheGreat (Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit)
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To: StAthanasiustheGreat

Here’s the Synaxarion for the Feast (note the name; there were however, other, in fact several, St. Athanansiuses)):

“Saint Anastasius was a Persian by race, the son of a Magus, and a soldier in the Persian army in the days of Chosroes II, King of Persia, and Heraclius, Emperor of New Rome. The Saint’s Persian name was Magundat.

When Chosroes captured Jerusalem in the year 614 and took the Precious Cross away captive, Magundat heard the report of the miracles that came to pass through the Cross of our salvation. Being of a prudent mind, perplexed that an instrument of torture should be so highly honored by the Christians, yet seized with longing to learn their Faith, he diligently sought out instruction in the whole divine dispensation of Christ: His Incarnation, Passion, and Resurrection. When he learned what he sought to know, his soul was filled with wonder and joy. Withdrawing to the Holy City, he was baptized by Saint Modestus, Patriarch of Jerusalem, and became a monk, receiving the new name of Anastasius.

As he read the lives of the Saints and the accounts of the holy Martyrs, his heart was kindled with love for them to such a degree that he prayed to be counted worthy of a martyr’s end like unto theirs. Finally, unable to contain his longing, he left his monastery. Encountering certain Persian Magi at Caesarea, he rebuked them for their delusion. Since Palestine was still held in the captivity of the Persians, he was taken before the Persian ruler, questioned, beaten, and imprisoned. He was then taken with other captives to Persia, where, after many tortures, refusing to espouse again the error of his fathers, he was hanged up by one hand, strangled with a noose, and beheaded. The translation of his holy relics is celebrated on the 24th of this month.”

14 posted on 01/23/2008 4:04:25 AM PST by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: All
Saint Vincent, Deacon & Martyr

Saint Vincent, Deacon & Martyr
Optional Memorial
January 22nd

Saint Vincent (+304) was born in Huesca, Spain. He was deacon of the Church of Saragossa and suffered martyrdom in Valencia in the persecution under Diocletian.

Source: Daily Roman Missal, Edited by Rev. James Socías, Midwest Theological Forum, Chicago, Illinois ©2003


Eternal Father,
You gave Saint Vincent
the courage to endure torture and death for the Gospel:
fill us with Your Spirit
and strengthen us in Your love.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

First Reading: 2 Corinthians 4:7-15
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us.

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For while we live we are always being given up to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you.

Since we have the same spirit of faith as he had who wrote, "I believed, and so I spoke," we too believe, and so we speak, knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into His presence. For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

Gospel Reading: Matthew 10:17-22
Beware of men; for they will deliver you up to councils, and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for My sake, to bear testimony before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; and you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.

15 posted on 01/22/2010 8:44:44 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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