Skip to comments.(Spain 890-1050) The Restoration of Orthodoxy
Posted on 01/16/2005 3:04:30 AM PST by miltonim
The seed of the Church is Her martyrs. So has it ever been. We now come to the final period of Spanish holiness, that sown by the martyrs and cultivated by the monastics and bishops who followed from the end of the ninth century until the downfall of Orthodox Iberia in about 1050. This last age opens with St. Vintila, a hermit who reposed at Pugino near Orense in Galicia in 890 and is feasted on 23 December. In c. 900 St. Lambert, a servant working near Saragossa, was killed by his Moorish master for being a Christian - his feast is on 16 April. A little after this in 915 the Bishop of Orense, St. Ansurius, helped found the monastery of Ribas de Sil, to where he retired as a simple monk in 922. He reposed in 925 and is feasted on 26 January. Next comes St. Tigridia who, holy Abbess of a nunnery at Oña near Burgos, reposed in c. 925. Her memory is kept on 22 November. Aged about ten, St. Pelagius (Pelayo in Spanish) was taken hostage by the Moors in Asturias in northern Spain and taken to Cordoba. Here he was offered freedom and other rewards if he would become Muslim. After three years in prison, he was tortured before finally dying at the age of thirteen in 925. He is still honoured in Spain on 26 June.
In c. 936 reposed St. Gennadius, Bishop of Astorga. As Abbot he had previously restored the monastery of San Pedro de Montes (see above) and was active in revitalising monasticism throughout north-west Spain. He was Bishop of Astorga for some thirty-six years until about 931 when he retired to live as a hermit at San Pedro. Here he reposed and is feasted on 25 May. St. Gennadius was aided by St. Urban, Abbot of Penalba in the diocese of Astorga, who departed this life in c. 940 and is remembered on 6 April. Two years later in about 942 reposed St. Hermogius, a native of Tuy in Galicia and founder of the monastery of Labrugia. Uncle to St. Pelagius (see above), he had also been taken hostage to Cordoba but was freed by the Moors. At the end of his life, he retired as Bishop of Tuy to the monastery of Ribas de Sil. St. Gennadius, whom we have mentioned above, was succeeded by a former disciple, St. Vincent, who reposed in c. 950 and is feasted on 9 May.
To prove that martyrdom had not yet finished even during this period of renewal, we have the examples of Sts. Pelagius, Arsenius and Silvanus, all hermits near Burgos in Old Castile, where they are still venerated. Martyred by the Moors in c. 950, they lived in a cell which was later to become the monastery of Artanza where their memory is kept on 30 August. St. Hermenegild was a monk at Salcedo near Tuy and helped spread monasticism in both Spanish Galicia and Portuguese Galicia with the great Portuguese St. Rudesind. He reposed in 953 and is commemorated on 5 November. Another monastic saint of this period is St. Amaswinthus, monk and Abbot for forty-two years near Malaga in Andalusia. His memory is feasted on 22 December. St. Peter (928-987), born in Venice and originally an admiral of the Venetian fleet, gave up everything to become a monk at the famous monastery of Cuxa in the Pyrenees, where he finished as a hermit. He is recalled on 10 January.
Another St. Peter, surnamed Martinez or St. Peter of Mozonzo, became a monk at the monastery of Mozonzo in Galicia in about 950. In about 986, however, already Abbot of St. Martin's monastery in Compostela in Galicia, he was appointed Archbishop of that city. He is much venerated as a hero of the Spanish Reconquest. Especially devoted to the Mother of God, he reposed in around 1000 and is feasted on 10 September. St. Virila was Abbot of St. Saviour's monastery at Leyre in Navarre. He reposed in c. 1000 and is remembered on 1 October. St. Froilan, also from Galicia, became monk very young and then Abbot of a monastery at Moreruela in Old Castile, before becoming Bishop of Léon. He did much to restore monastic life, creating with his helper, below, monasteries for hundreds of monks and nuns in western Spain. He reposed in 1006 and was traditionally remembered on 5 October in Léon, of which diocese he is the patron. St. Froilan was ably helped by St. Attila (Attilianus) (c. 939-1009), a former hermit who also came from Galicia. At Pentecost 990, on the same day as St. Froilan, he was consecrated Bishop of Zamora to the south of Léon. St. Attilanus is feasted on 5 October, two days after his friend.
St. Hermengaudius (Armengol in Catalan) was the very active and monastically-minded Bishop of Urgel in the Catalan Pyrenees from 1010 to 1035 when he reposed. His memory is feasted on 3 November. St. Guillermo (William) of Penacorada was monk at the monastery of Satagun in Léon. In 988 he fled the Moors and settled with other monks in Penacorada where he founded a monastery now named after him. He reposed in c. 1042 and is commemorated on 20 March. St. Atto was first a monk at Oña in Old Castile and then became Bishop of Oca-Valpusta nearby. He reposed in about 1044 and his memory is kept on 1 June. Finally we come to St. Casilda (> c. 1050). A native of Toledo and probably of Moorish origin she became Christian, a nun and then anchoress at Briviesca near Burgos where she was greatly venerated and honoured on 9 April.
In fact, even just as a reaction to the degredation both face, now, it would seem the climate is right for a new Charlemagne, to fight first the Muslim, but then to bring it back against Protestants, now secularists, in these 'euro' nations. Time will tell if that's how and who and what emerges from the present 'euro' doldrums.
This is the era of Earth’s 1st EL CID, who stopped the Moors’ takeover of a Christian Europe through a baby Spain 1,000 years ago.
A most prophetic prequel of things to come 1,000 years later, perhaps...?