Feast of Saint George
(d. 303 A.D.)
St. George was born in Palestine to noble Christian parents. Like his father, he enlisted as a soldier in the Roman army serving under Emperor Diocletian. He was renowned for his bravery and outstanding military prowess, and was a favorite of the Emperor.
Many fantastical legends are ascribed to him, however, none are known to be true with any certainty. The most famous legend is St. George and the Dragon, where St. George, after making the Sign of the Cross, saved a king’s daughter from being devoured by a man-eating dragon. St. George killed the elusive dragon, and by this feat persuaded many souls to accept baptism. He also admonished the king, in gratitude for his princess being saved by Christ’s power, to support the cause of the Church.
What is known with certainty is that St. George, after confessing and refusing to renounce his faith in Christ, was martyred in Palestine during the Christian persecution of Diocletian. He became a highly venerated saint in antiquity, and many early churches were dedicated in his honor. St. George is the patron of many causes and countries, including soldiers, knights, chivalry, horsemen, farmers, Canada, England, and Germany, to name a few.
His feast day is April 23.
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Eager to encounter the enemy, he first stripped away his worldly wealth, by giving all he had to the poor. Then free and unencumbered, bearing the shield of faith, he plunged into the thick of the battle, an ardent soldier for Christ. Clearly what he did serves to teach us a valuable lesson: If we are afraid to strip ourselves of our worldly possessions, then we are unfit to make a strong defense of the faith.”
Saint Peter Damian reflection of Saint George
Behold, I have given you authority to tread upon serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall hurt you.”
Saint George, dragon-slayer, martyr, pray for us.
Be not afraid! And may the peace of Christ be with you and your loved ones today and always. Holy Family, pray for us. Amen.