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Friday, July 20, 2018
Com. of St. Margaret of Antioch
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Saint Margaret of Antioch by Peter Candid

Today is the feast of St. Jerome Emiliani, great patron saint of orphans, but today also features a commemoration of St. Margaret, Virgin and Martyr.  This St. Margaret is not St. Margaret Mary, who received from Our Lord Himself the First Friday Request.

According to the version of the story in the Golden Legend, St. Margaret was a native of Antioch and the daughter of a pagan priest named Aedesius. Her mother having died soon after her birth, Margaret was nursed by a Christian woman a short distance from Antioch. Having embraced Christianity and consecrated her virginity to God, St. Margaret was disowned by her father, adopted by her nurse, and lived in the country keeping sheep with her foster mother. Olybrius, Governor of the Roman Diocese of the East, asked to marry her, but with the demand that she renounce Christianity. Upon her refusal, she was cruelly tortured, during which various miraculous incidents occurred.

St. Margaret was tortured at Antioch in Pisidia, in the last general persecution during the third century. After having endured many torments, she finished her martyrdom by the sword.

Collect:

O God, one of the marvelous examples of Your power was granting the victory of martyrdom even to delicate womanhood. May the example of the blessed virgin martyr Margaret, whose birthday we celebrate today, draw us closer to You. Through our Lord . . .

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