Browsing: Religion

A Brief History October 19 marks the feast of Saint Frithuswith, also spelled Frideswide, who passed away on that date in 727 A.D., and for whom a king had died as he tried to force her into marriage! Digging Deeper Frithuswith was born as a princess in England, but became the first abbess of an Oxford double monastery.  As such, she is now the patron saint of Oxford. Before her canonization as a saint, young Princess Frithuswith founded St. Frideswide’s Priory.  As such, she became bound to celibacy.  Nevertheless, an English king named Algar wanted to marry her and despite her refusal,…

A Brief History On October 10, 1580, after a three-day siege, an English army beheaded over 600 Papal soldiers and civilians in Ireland. Digging Deeper In the decades following the religious turmoil brought about by the Protestant Reformation, the various Christian groups of Europe battled each other in wars to either assert their religious independence or to forcibly convert their enemies. One of the most infamous examples of religious violence occurred in the British isles where King Henry VIII founded the Anglican Church primarily to divorce one wife so as to marry another.  Henry’s reign is remembered for his having…

A Brief History Due to the implementation of the Gregorian calendar, October 7th was skipped in Italy, Poland, Portugal, and Spain in 1582. Digging Deeper Our calendar has changed a number of times in history and with those changes came the skipping and in some cases outright elimination of certain days of the year.  October 7, 1582 was one such date that does not exist in several countries’ history.  The omission of this particular date came with one of history’s most significant updates to the calendar most widely used in the world today: the Gregorian calendar. Prior to 1582, people…

A Brief History On October 2, 1187, one of history’s most significant sieges ended: The Siege of Jerusalem in which Saladin captured Jerusalem after 88 years of Crusader rule. Digging Deeper Jerusalem must hold some kind of record for number of times a city has been besieged or at least sought after by so many different peoples over such a long expanse of history. Long before the Crusades, the originally Hebrew city had been besieged by Egyptians in 925 B.C., Assyrians in 701 B.C., Babylonians in 597 B.C. and again in 587 B.C., Romans in 63 B.C., Herodians in 37…

A Brief History On September 28, 235 A.D., Pope Pontian became the first pope to resign his office, only to live out his days exiled to the mines of Sardinia! Digging Deeper When Pope Benedict XVI resigned his papacy in 2013, he was the first pope to do so since 1415.  In fact, he was one of only a handful of popes to ever resign.  Out of the 266 popes who have led Roman Catholicism, only six have ever abdicated.  Pope Emeritus Benedict actually retains various aspects of his former office and probably lives under better conditions than many people…

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