In 1639, in Lima, Peru, St. Martin de Porres. Martin was the illegitimate son of a Spanish nobleman and a freed black slave. He received training in medicine. He became a donatus, and later a lay brother, in the Dominican friary in Lima. He energetically fulfilled his community tasks, and untiringly cared for the sick in his community and the city. He extended practical charity to the hungry, to slaves, and to animals.
In Wales, about 650, St. Winefride. According to her legend, she was healed by St. Beuno (April 21) after a rejected suitor cut off her head. A spring appeared on the site, now called Holywell, whose waters have healing properties. It has been a pilgrimage site ever since. Her relics were taken to St. Peter’s Abbey in Shrewsbury in 1138.
In 753, in Germany, St. Pirmin. A refugee from Spain, he did missionary work in Baden. He rebuilt the abbey of Disentis, became the first abbot of Reichenau, and founded the abbey of Murbach.
In 1148, at Clairvaux, St. Malachy, bishop of Armagh. As a young priest he was involved in reforming and restructuring the Irish church. To qualify himself for this task, he studied canon law with St. Malchus, bishop of Lismore. After a year as abbot of Bangor, Malachy was appointed bishop, and served in that capacity successively at Connor, Armagh and Down. He introduced the canons regular to Ireland. On a trip to Rome he met St. Bernard, and then introduced the Cistercians to Ireland at Mellifont. On another trip to Rome, he became ill and died at Clairvaux. St. Bernard wrote his life.
In Switzerland, in 1226, St. Ida. Legend relates that she escaped an abusive husband and became a hermit. Years later, he asked her forgiveness. So many people came to visit her that she finally took refuge in the Benedictine monastery of Fischingen. Originally founded by monks from Petershausen in the 12th century and suppressed in the 19th century, Fischingen was refounded from Engelberg in 1977 at the urging of a zealous group of lay people.
Our daily martyrology was written by Fr. Hugh Feiss, OSB. Copyright © 2008 by the Monastery of the Ascension, Jerome, ID 83338.