ST MARTIN OF TOURS, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR – MEMORIAL: NOVEMBER 11
Martin was born at Sabaria, in Pannonia. When he was ten years old, against his parents’ wishes, he fled to a church and enrolled among the catechumens. As a young man of fifteen, he enrolled as a soldier, first in the army of Constantinus, then in that of Julian.
At Amiens, when he was eighteen years old, he gave part of his cloak to a certain poor man and was later refreshed by a wonderful apparition of Jesus Christ. He received Baptism with great interior joy. Afterwards, abandoning the military life, he was received by Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, among the number of acolytes. Then he was made Bishop of Tours and built a monastery, where, with eighty monks he lived, for some time, a very holy life.
When he was stricken with a grave fever at Candes, a village of his diocese, out of compassion for his disciples, he prayed thus to God: “O Lord, if I am still necessary to your people, I do not refuse to labour.” Soon afterwards, at the moment of death, beholding the enemy of the human race, he said: “What are you doing here, cruel beast? You will find no cause for my destruction.” As he uttered those words, he gave up his soul to God. He was then eighty-one years old and famous for many miracles.
– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964