Friday, August 10, 2012
Today is the feast day of St. Lawrence of Rome. St. Lawrence was one of the seven deacons who served under Pope St. Sixtus II. St. Lawrence along with Pope St. Sixtus II and many of the bishops and priests were all martyred in 258 AD during the persecutions of Valerian. St. Lawrence was in charge of the Church's treasures located in Rome, and after the martyrdom of Pope St. Sixtus II, Valerian called St. Lawrence before him and ordered him to present the riches of the church to him or face death. The story that follows is one that every time I read it leaves me in awe of St. Lawrence's bravery and courage. The Roman Christian poet Prudentius recounts the story of St. Lawrence in his Hymnus in Honorem Passionis Laurentii: Beatissimi Martyris.