Archive for the ‘March 6’ Category

Feast of Martin Niemoller (March 6)   Leave a comment

martin-niemoller

Above:  Martin Niemoller

Image in the Public Domain

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FRIEDRICH GUSTAV EMIL MARTIN NIEMOLLER (JANUARY 14, 1892-MARCH 6, 1984)

German Lutheran Minister and Peace Activist

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First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–

Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–

Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.

–Martin Niemoller

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That text, sadly, never ceases to be relevant.

If one seeks to read about a man who repented–turned around, literally–one can find such material in this post.

Martin Niemoller, born in Lippstadt, German Empire, on January 14, 1892, changed greatly during his lifetime.  He, once an officer in the imperial German navy, became a pacifist later in life.  And our saint, once a Nazi sympathizer, became an outspoken opponent of the Third Reich and a prisoner thereof.  His pilgrimage with Jesus changed his mind and made him politically unacceptable in diverse quarters.  This was because Niemoller did what he thought Jesus would do, not what he knew others wanted him to do.

Our saint was a son of Paula Muller and Heinrich Niemoller, a Lutheran minister.  Martin, educated at Lippstadt and Elberfeld, joined the imperial German navy at the age of 18 years, in 1910.  He intended to become a career officer.  Niemoller was a u-boat commander during World War I.  He, as the “scourge of Malta,” raided Allied shipping in the Mediterranean Sea.  Then Germany lost the war.

Niemoller studied theology after World War I and became an ordained minister in 1924.  Seven years later he began to serve at a parish in Berlin.  At first Niemoller welcomed the rise of Nazism.  By 1934, however, he recognized the depth of that error and denounced Ludwig Muller, the newly installed pro-Nazi Reich bishop of the German Evangelical Church.  Muller was, according to our saint, the “scourge of the church of Christ.”  Niemoller, a founder of the anti-Nazi Confessing Church, lost his position at the Berlin parish in 1934.  Nevertheless, he continued to preach there for three years.  Nazi authorities arrested him 1937.  Niemoller was a prisoner until 1945.

Our saint’s wartime experiences changed him.  He, aware of his share of guilt for the rise of the Third Reich, insisted upon collective German guilt for World War II.  News of atomic weapons horrified him.  The detonation of the hydrogen bomb a few years later completed the process of turning Niemoller into a pacifist.  The ethics of the Sermon on the Mount were incompatible with modern warfare, he concluded.

After World War II Niemoller helped to rebuild the Lutheran Church in Germany and became involved in the ecumenical movement.  From 1947 1961 he served as the President of the Evangelical Church in Hesse and Nassau.  After that, for seven years, he was President of the World Council of Churches.

Controversy followed Niemoller as he opposed war in general and modern warfare, the Cold War, and the Vietnam War in particular.  He offended not only conservative Cold Warriors but also many Cold War liberals.

Niemoller married twice.  In 1919 he became the husband of Else Bremer, who died in an automobile accident (in which he suffered injuries) in 1961.  The couple had four sons and three daughters.  He married his second wife, Sibylle von Zell, in 1971.

Our saint died at Weisbaden, West Virginia, on March 6, 1984.  He was 92 years old.

One might disagree with some of Niemoller’s answers to the question of what Jesus would do in certain circumstances.  I do.  I have, in fact, attempted to be a pacifist, without success.  I have, however, chosen to refrain from condemning pacifists and pacifism.  I do agree, however, that Jesus would not drop a hydrogen bomb on an enemy.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JANUARY 9, 2017 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS PEPIN OF LANDEN, ITTA OF METZ, THEIR RELATIONS, AMAND, AUSTREGISILUS, AND SULPICIUS II OF BOURGES, FAITHFUL CHRISTIANS ACROSS GENERATIONAL LINES

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANTHONY MARY PUCCI, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST

THE FEAST OF JULIA CHESTER EMERY, UPHOLDER OF MISSIONS

THE FEAST OF SAINT PHILIP II OF MOSCOW, METROPOLITAN OF MOSCOW AND ALL RUSSIA AND MARTYR

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Almighty God, we praise you for your servant Martin Niemoller,

through whom you have called the church to its tasks and renewed its life.

Raise up in our own day teachers and prophets inspired by your Spirit,

whose voices will give strength to your church and proclaim the reality of your reign,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Jeremiah 1:4-10

Psalm 46

1 Corinthians 3:11-23

Mark 19:35-45

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

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Feast of Blessed Jordan of Pisa (March 6)   Leave a comment

jordan-of-pisa

Above:  Blessed Jordan of Pisa

Image in the Public Domain

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BLESSED JORDAN OF PISA (CIRCA 1255-AUGUST 19, 1311)

Dominican Evangelist

Alternative feast day = August 19

Blessed Jordan of Pisa, born at Pisa circa 1255, joined the Order of Preachers (the Dominicans) at that city in 1280 then studied at the Sorbonne.  By 1305 he was Lector at Sainta Maria Novella Church, Florence.  In that city he was a popular and effective preacher, for he spoke not in the respectable Latin but in vernacular Italian and Tuscan.  This was controversial.  In 1311, the year of his death at Piacenza, he had become Professor of Theology at St. James Friary, Paris.  Our saint, who had a devotion to Our Lady, memorized the missal, the breviary, most of the Bible, and the second part of the Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas.

Pope Gregory XVI beatified Jordan of Pisa in 1838.

The question of how best to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ is always current.  Some, for all their sincerity, cross the line into tackiness and wind up embarrassing many longterm adherents while inviting ridicule.  (The Extreme Teen Study Bible comes to mind immediately.)  A separate issue related to methodology is that of class distinctions, which are not necessarily infallible definitions of good taste.  Blessed Jordan of Pisa provides a case study is crossing the class barrier without resorting to tackiness.  How can one respond to the message of Christ if one cannot hear it in one’s language, after all?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JANUARY 9, 2017 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS PEPIN OF LANDEN, ITTA OF METZ, THEIR RELATIONS, AMAND, AUSTREGISILUS, AND SULPICIUS II OF BOURGES, FAITHFUL CHRISTIANS ACROSS GENERATIONAL LINES

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANTHONY MARY PUCCI, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST

THE FEAST OF JULIA CHESTER EMERY, UPHOLDER OF MISSIONS

THE FEAST OF SAINT PHILIP II OF MOSCOW, METROPOLITAN OF MOSCOW AND ALL RUSSIA AND MARTYR

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Almighty and everlasting God,

we thank you for your servant Blessed Jordan of Pisa,

whom you called to preach the Gospel to the people of Florence.

Raise up in this and every land evangelists and heralds of your kingdom,

that your Church may proclaim the unsearchable riches of our Savior Jesus Christ;

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Isaiah 52:7-10

Psalm 96 or 96:1-7

Acts 1:1-9

Luke 10:1-9

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 716

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Feast of William Bright (March 6)   1 comment

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Above:  Christ Church College, Oxford, England, Between 1890 and 1900

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-08765

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WILLIAM BRIGHT (DECEMBER 14, 1824-MARCH 6, 1901)

Anglican Canon, Scholar, and Hymn Writer

William Bright graduated from University College, Oxford, with an A.B. in 1846 and an A.M. in 1849.  Between those two events he won the Ellerton Theological Essay Prize and took Holy Orders, both of them in 1848.  Next he served as Theological Tutor at Glenalmond College, Perthshire; then as Tutor of University College, Oxford.  He was Honorary Canon at Cumbrae Cathedral (1865-1893) and simultaneously Canon of Christ Church, Oxford, and Regius Professor of Ecclesiastical History, Oxford, starting in 1868.

Bright was a talented poet and a scholar of church history.  A partial list of his published works follows:

  1. Athanasius, and Other Poems, by a Fellow of a College (1858);
  2. A History of the Church from the Edict of Milan to the Council of Chalcedon (1860);
  3. Ancient Collects, Selected from Various Rituals (1862, as compiler);
  4. Hymns and Other Poems (1866);
  5. Ecclesiastical History, by Eusebius (1872, as editor);
  6. Chapters of Early Church History (1877);
  7. Latin Version of the Prayer Book.

He wrote hymns, some of which I have added to my GATHERED PRAYERS blog:

  1. And Now The Wants are Told that Brought” (1866);
  2. At The Feet, O Christ, We Lay” (1867); and
  3. And Now, O Father, Mindful of the Love” (1873).

His papers are available at the Bodleian Library, Oxford.

William Bright used his intellect and creativity to the glory of God.  That is a fine legacy.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 19, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ANNE HUTCHINSON, REBELLIOUS PURITAN

THE FEAST OF BLAISE PASCAL, MATHEMATICIAN AND ROMAN CATHOLIC THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN EUDES, FOUNDER OF THE CONGREGATION OF JESUS AND MARY

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For Further Reading:

http://anglicanhistory.org/england/wbright/index.html

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O God, you have endowed us with memory, reason, and skill.

We thank you for the faithful legacy of [William Bright and all others]

who have dedicated their lives to you and to the intellectual pursuits.

May we, like them, respect your gift of intelligence fully and to your glory.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Psalm 103

Philippians 4:8-9

Mark 12:28-34

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 6, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDMUND KING, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF LINCOLN

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Revised on December 23, 2016

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Feast of St. Chrodegang of Metz (March 6)   Leave a comment

Above:  Gaul in 714 C.E.

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ (712-766)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Metz

St. Chrodegang of Metz was of the lineage of St. Pepin (I) of Landen, and therefore in the family tree of Charlemagne, who became king two years after the bishop died.  Secretary to his kinsman Charles Martel, Mayor of Austrasia during the reigns of Merovingian Kings Dagobert III (reigned 711-716), Clotaire/Lothair IV (reigned 717-720), and Theodoric IV (reigned 721-737), many of the saint’s activities were related to royal politics.  He was instrumental making Charles Martel’s son, Pepin III “the Short,” also mayor of the palace, displacing the by-then ceremonial Merovingian Dynasty officially in 751.  (Charlemagne was Pepin III’s son, by the way.)  St. Chrodegang also played a crucial role in Pepin III’s defense of Rome in 751 and served as Pepin III’s ambassador the Pope Stephen III (reigned 752-757).

Although a layman, St. Chrodegang had become Bishop of Metz in 742, so many of his political activities overlapped with his episcopal duties.  As bishop he founded churches and monasteries, encouraged monasticism, and introduced Gregorian Chant and the Roman liturgy to his diocese.  He also established the choir school (eventually famous) at Metz. The saint died at Metz on March 6, 766.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 13, 2011 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ELLA J. BAKER, WITNESS FOR CIVIL RIGHTS

THE FEAST OF SAINT LUCY OF SYRACUSE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

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Almighty God,

you raised up faithful bishops of your church,

including your servant Saint Chrodegang of Metz.

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 December 23, 2016

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Saints’ Days and Holy Days for March   Leave a comment

Daffodil

Image Source = Bertil Videt

1 (Anna of Oxenhall and Her Faithful Descendants, Wenna the Queen, Non, Samson of Dol, Cybi, and David of Wales)

  • Daniel March, Sr., U.S. Congregationalist and Presbyterian Minister, Poet, Hymn Writer, and Liturgist
  • Edwin Hodder, English Biographer, Devotional Writer, and Hymn Writer
  • Roger Lefort, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Bourges

2 (Shabbaz Bhatti and Other Christian Martyrs of the Islamic World)

  • Aidan of Lindisfarne, Celtic Missionary Bishop; Caelin, Celtic Priest; St. Cedd of Lastingham, Celtic and Roman Catholic Priest, Bishop of Essex, and Abbot of Lastingham; Cynibil of Lastingham, Celtic and Roman Catholic Priest and Monk; Chad of Mercia, Celtic and Roman Catholic Priest, Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop of York/the Northumbrians and of Lichfield/the Mercians and the Lindsey People; Vitalian, Bishop of Rome; Adrian of Canterbury, Roman Catholic Abbot of Ss. Peter and Paul, Canterbury; Theodore of Tarsus, Roman Catholic Monk and Archbishop of Canterbury; and Cuthbert of Lindisfarne, Celtic and Roman Catholic Monk, Hermit, Priest, and Bishop of Lindisfarne
  • John Stuart Blackie, Scottish Presbyterian Scholar, Linguist, Poet, Theologian, and Hymn Writer
  • Ludmilla of Bohemia, Duchess of Bohemia and Martyr; Her Grandson, Wenceslaus I, Duke of Bohemia and Martyr; Agnes of Prague, Bohemian Princess and Nun; Pen Pal of Clare of Assisi, Foundress of the Poor Clares; Sister of Agnes of Assisi, Abbot at Monticelli; Daughter of Hortulana of Assisi, Poor Clare Nun

3 (Katharine Drexel, Founder of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament)

  • Antonio Francesco Marzorati, Johannes Laurentius Weiss, and Michele Pro Fasoli, Franscican Missionary Priests and Martyrs in Ethiopia, 1716
  • Gervinus, Roman Catholic Abbot and Scholar
  • Henry Elias Fries, U.S. Moravian Industrialist; and His Wife, Rosa Elvira Fries, U.S. Moravian Musician

4 (Charles Simeon, Anglican Priest and Promoter of Missions; Henry Martyn, Anglican Priest, Linguist, Translator, and Missionary; and Abdul Masih, Indian Convert and Missionary)

  • John Edgar Park, U.S. Presbyterian then Congregationalist Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Paul Cuffee, U.S. Presbyterian Missionary to the Shinnecock Nation
  • Thomas Hornblower Gill, English Unitarian then Anglican Hymn Writer

5 (Karl Rahner, Jesuit Priest and Theologian)

  • Christopher Macassoli of Vigevano, Franciscan Priest
  • Eusebius of Cremona, Roman Catholic Abbot and Humanitarian
  • Ion Costist, Franciscan Lay Brother

6 (Martin Niemoller, German Lutheran Minister and Peace Activist)

  • Chrodegang of Metz, Roman Catholic Bishop
  • Jordan of Pisa, Dominican Evangelist
  • William Bright, Anglican Canon, Scholar, and Hymn Writer

7 (James Hewitt McGown, Humanitarian)

  • Drausinus and Ansericus, Roman Catholic Bishops of Soissons; Vindician, Roman Catholic Bishop of Cambrai; and Leodegarius, Roman Catholic Bishop of Autun
  • Edward Osler, English Doctor, Editor, and Poet
  • Perpetua, Felicity, and Their Companions, Martyrs at Carthage, 203

8 (Edward King, Bishop of Lincoln)

  • Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • John Hampden Gurney, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • John of God, Founder of the Brothers Hospitallers of Saint John of God

9 (Sophronius of Jerusalem, Roman Catholic Patriarch)

  • Emanuel Cronenwett, U.S. Lutheran Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymn Translator
  • Frances of Rome, Foundress of the Collatines
  • Robert Hall Baynes, Anglican Bishop of Madagascar

10 (Marie-Joseph Lagrange, Roman Catholic Priest and Biblical Scholar)

  • Agripinnus of Autun, Roman Catholic Bishop; Germanus of Paris, Roman Catholic Bishop; and Droctoveus of Autun, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • John Oglivie, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Macarius of Jerusalem, Roman Catholic Bishop

11 (John Swertner, Dutch-German Moravian Minister, Hymn Writer, Hymn Translator, and Hymnal Editor; and his collaborator, John Mueller, German-English Moravian Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymnal Editor)

  • Aengus the Culdee, Hermit and Monk; and Maelruan, Abbot
  • Eulogius of Spain, Roman Catholic Bishop of Toledo, Cordoba; and Leocrita; Martyrs
  • Folliot Sandford Pierpoint, Anglican Educator, Poet, and Hymn Writer

12 (Trasilla and Emiliana, Sisters-in-Law of Sylvia of Rome; and Her Son, Gregory I “the Great,” Bishop of Rome)

  • Maximillian of Treveste, Roman Conscientious Objector
  • Rutilio Grande, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Theophanes the Chroncler, Defender of Icons

13 (Yves Congar, Roman Catholic Priest and Theologian)

  • Heldrad, Roman Catholic Abbot
  • Plato of Symboleon and Theodore Studites, Eastern Orthodox Abbots, and Nicephorus of Constantinople, Patriarch
  • Roderic of Cabra and Solomon of Cordoba, Roman Catholic Martyrs

14 (Fannie Lou Hamer, Prophet of Freedom)

  • Alfred Lister Peace, Organist in England and Scotland
  • Harriet King Osgood Munger, U.S. Congregationalist Hymn Writer
  • Nehemiah Goreh, Indian Anglican Priest and Theologian

15 (Zachary of Rome, Pope)

  • Jan Adalbert Balicki and Ladislaus Findysz, Roman Catholic Priests in Poland
  • Ozora Stearns Davis, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Theologian, and Hymn Writer
  • Vethappan Solomon, Apostle to the Nicobar Islands

16 (Adalbald of Ostevant, Rictrudis of Marchiennes, and Their Relations)

  • Abraham Kidunaia, Roman Catholic Hermit, and Mary of Edessa, Roman Catholic Anchoress
  • John Cacciafronte, Roman Catholic Monk, Abbot, Bishop, and Martyr
  • Megingaud of Wurzburg, Roman Catholic Monk and Bishop

17 (Patrick, Apostle of Ireland)

  • Ebenezer Elliott, “The Corn Law Rhymer”
  • Eliza Sibbald Alderson, Poet and Hymn Writer; and John Bacchus Dykes, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • Henry Scott Holland, Anglican Hymn Writer and Priest

18 (Leonides of Alexandria, Roman Catholic Martyr; Origen, Roman Catholic Theologian; Demetrius of Alexandria, Roman Catholic Bishop; and Alexander of Jerusalem, Roman Catholic Bishop)

  • Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop, Theologian, and Liturgist
  • Paul of Cyprus, Eastern Orthodox Martyr
  • Robert Walmsley, English Congregationalist Hymn Writer

19 (JOSEPH OF NAZARETH, HUSBAND OF MARY, MOTHER OF GOD)

20 (Sebastian Castellio, Prophet of Religious Liberty)

  • Christopher Wordsworth, Hymn Writer and Anglican Bishop of Lincoln
  • Maria Josefa Sancho de Guerra, Foundress of the Congregation of the Servants of Jesus
  • Samuel Rodigast, German Lutheran Academic and Hymn Writer

21 (Johann Sebastian Bach, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, and Johann Christian Bach, Composers)

  • Nicholas of Flüe and His Grandson, Conrad Scheuber, Swiss Hermits
  • Serapion of Thmuis, Roman Catholic Bishop
  • William Edward Hickson, English Music Educator and Social Reformer

22 (Deogratias, Roman Catholic Bishop of Carthage)

  • Emmanuel Mournier, Personalist Philosopher
  • James De Koven, Episcopal Priest
  • Thomas Hughes, British Social Reformer and Member of Parliament

23 (Gregory the Illuminator and Isaac the Great, Patriarchs of Armenia)

  • Meister Eckhart, Roman Catholic Theologian and Mystic
  • Metodej Dominik Trčka, Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
  • Victorian of Hadrumetum, Martyr at Carthage, 484

24 (Oscar Romero, Roman Catholic Archbishop of San Salvador; and the Martyrs of El Salvador)

  • Didacus Joseph of Cadiz, Capuchin Friar
  • Paul Couturier, Apostle of Christian Unity
  • Thomas Attwood, “Father of Modern Church Music”

25 (ANNUNCIATION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST)

  • Dismas, Penitent Bandit

26 (Harriet Tubman, Abolitionist)

  • George Rundle Prynne, Anglican Priest, Poet, and Hymn Writer
  • Ludger, Roman Catholic Bishop of Munster
  • Margaret Clitherow, Roman Catholic Martyr in England

27 (James Solomon Russell, Episcopal Priest, Educator, and Advocate for Racial Equality)

  • Charles Henry Brent, Episcopal Bishop and Ecumenist
  • Nicholas Owen, Thomas Garnet, Mark Barkworth, Edward Oldcorne, and Ralph Ashley, Roman Catholic Martyrs
  • Rupert of Salzburg, Apostle of Bavaria and Austria

28 (Tutilo, Roman Catholic Monk and Composer)

  • Guntram of Burgundy, King
  • Katharine Lee Bates, U.S. Educator, Poet, and Hymn Writer
  • Richard Chevenix Trench, Anglican Archbishop of Dublin

29 (Charles Villiers Stanford, Composer, Organist, and Conductor)

  • Dora Greenwell, Poet and Devotional Writer
  • John Keble, Anglican Priest and Poet
  • Jonas and Barachisius, Roman Catholic Martyrs

30 (Innocent of Alaska, Equal to the Apostles and Enlightener of North America)

  • Franz Joseph Haydn and His Brother, Michael Haydn, Composers
  • Joan of Toulouse, Carmelite Nun; and Simon Stock, Carmelite Friar
  • John Wright Buckham, U.S. Congregationalist Minister, Theologian, and Hymn Writer

31 (Maria Skobtsova, Orthodox Martyr)

  • Ernest Trice Thompson, U.S. Presbyterian Minister and Renewer of the Church
  • John Donne, Anglican Priest and Poet
  • John Marriott, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

 

Lowercase boldface on a date with two or more commemorations indicates a primary feast.