Feast of Sts. Mirocles of Milan and Epiphanius of Pavia (January 21)   Leave a comment

Above:  Roman Northern Italy

Image in the Public Domain

Milan = Mediolanum

Pavia = Ticinum

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SAINT MIROCLES OF MILAN (DIED  November 30, 316)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Milan

SAINT EPIPHANIUS OF PAVIA (438-January 21, 496)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Pavia

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Of the life of St. Mirocles of Milan we know little.  He died in 316, having become Bishop of Milan sometime before 313.  We do know, however, that he was a relative of Focaria, mother of St. Epiphanius of Pavia.  Raised in the household of Crispinus, Bishop of Pavia, St. Epiphanius became a deacon at age 20 then the bishop’s handpicked successor eight years later.

The times were tumultuous.  The Western Roman Empire was on its last legs in 466, when St. Epiphanius became Bishop of Pavia.  A decade later, Odoacer destroyed the city shortly before Romulus Augustulus, the last Western Roman Emperor, abdicated in 476.  The map of Western Europe changed greatly, with Odoacer ruling as King of Italy and with other successor states rising in the rest of the former empire.  St. Epiphanius could not escape the turmoil of his time.  He went on diplomatic missions related to barbarian invasions and had to negotiate the ransom of his sister, Honorata, kidnapped from Pavia abbey, and that of Romans who had sided with Odoacer, not Theodoric the Great, who succeeded Odoacer and founded the Ostrogothic Kingdom.  Theodoric deprived many of his opponents of their civil rights.  St. Epiphanius interceded for these people before Theodoric, who agreed, provided that the bishop intercede for captives the Burgundians had taken in 489, during the war between Theodoric and Odoacer.  St. Epiphanius undertook that mission during the Winter weather, dying of exposure to the elements en route to keep his word.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 29, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF GEORGE DAWSON, ENGLISH BAPTIST AND UNITARIAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF DOROTHY DAY, SOCIAL ACTIVIST

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE CHURCH OF NORTH INDIA, 1970

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Almighty God,

you raised up faithful bishops of your church,

including your servants Saints Mirocles of Milan and Epiphanius of Pavia.

May the memory of his life be a source of joy for us and a bulwark of our faith,

so that we may serve and confess your name before the world,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Ezekiel 34:11-16 or Acts 20:17-35

Psalm 84

1 Peter 5:1-4 or Ephesians 3:14-21

John 21:15-17 or Matthew 24:42-47

–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 60

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Revised on November 20, 2016

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