Daily Martyrology for July 29

In the first century, St. Martha. She is mentioned three times in the gospel: when she asked Jesus to tell Mary to help her; at the raising of Lazarus; and just before the passion, when Martha, Mary and Lazarus entertained Jesus at dinner. Later legend had her travel to the south of France. As patron of householders, she is depicted with a bunch of keys or a ladle.

In Troyes, in 479, St. Lupus, bishop. He was married to a sister of St. Hilary of Arles. After some years of marriage they parted to become religious. Lupus became a monk at Lérins, and shortly afterwards, bishop of Troyes. In 429 he accompanied St. Germanus of Auxerre on a mission to England to prevent the spread of Pelagianism, a heresy which downplayed the role of grace.

In 1030, St. Olaf, the patron saint of Norway. After spending his youth as a marauding Viking, he became a Christian. In 1016 he became King of Norway. He insisted on the rule of law. He wanted to make Norway a Christian country, but his use of force alienated the people.

In 1099, Blessed Urban II, pope. He studied under St. Bruno (October 6) and became a monk, and later prior, at Cluny. When he was elected pope in 1088, he had to cope with an anti-pope and the hostility of Emperor Henry IV. He carried on the reform policies of Gregory VII by holding synods to attack simony, lay investiture and clerical marriage. In 1095 at Clermont, he proclaimed the “Truce of God” as law and, in response to a request from the Byzantine emperor, called for the First Crusade.

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Our daily martyrology was written by Fr. Hugh Feiss, OSB. Copyright © 2008 by the Monastery of the Ascension, Jerome, ID 83338.