Saturday, January 21, 2017

St. Agnes

Agnes was born into a wealthy Christian family in Rome in 291. She made a promise to God to maintain her purity, and she turned down several marriage proposals. One of the spurned men turned her name into the authorities out of anger. She was arrested for being a Christian.

The governor sent her to a brothel. She remained faithful and pure. She was then sentenced to death. She reported said, "I would offend my Spouse if I were to try to please you. He chose me first and He shall have me!"

One account says that Prefect Sempronius commanded that Agnes be dragged through the streets naked. During the ordeal, her hair grew to cover her entire body. Men who attempted to rape her were immediately struck blind.

She ultimately died by sword on January 21, 304.  A virgin-martyr, she is the patron of young girls, chastity, and rape survivors.

For the past week or so, I kept thinking of St. Agnes, but I wasn’t sure why. She would just pop into my head. I knew she was one of the early Roman martyrs and that she’s associated with a lamb, but I didn’t know much more and I didn’t have a particular devotion.

Today, I woke up at 6 a.m. with an overwhelming urge to go to daily Mass, which I don’t think has ever happened on a Saturday morning before. I went, and it turned out it’s St. Agnes’ feast day. I don’t know why she wants my attention, but she has it now. I certainly appreciate her prayers.

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