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martyr

Saint Ephraim Monastery, Nea Makri, Greece. Photo: Joanna Gillan

The Tragic History of Saint Ephraim Monastery in Greece

Situated in Nea Makri, Attica, the Saint Ephraim Monastery stands as a significant landmark showcasing Greece’s historical and spiritual lineage. While originally called the Annunciation of the...
Two Sides to Every Story: The North American Martyrs Shrines and Indigenous/ Roman Catholic Relations

Two Sides to Every Story: The North American Martyrs Shrines and Indigenous/ Roman Catholic Relations

After the Blessed Virgin Mary and her assorted shrines and grottoes, evangelical Catholics in Canada and United States flock to and draw inspiration from the North American Martyrs’ Shrines in...
Ruins of the Byzantine Church which is now virtually reconstructed

Virtually Visit a Byzantine Church Built for a Mysterious Martyr

In 2017 Israeli archaeologists made a stunning discovery from the Byzantine period . They uncovered a Christian church that is elaborately decorated with breath-taking mosaics . The Byzantine church...
A figure wearing a face mask in St Albans Cathedral

New Masked Carving in St Albans Cathedral Restoration is Distasteful

St Albans Cathedral in Hertfordshire is the oldest site of continuous Christian worship in Britain and work to restore its rare medieval shrine has just been completed. But the addition of a new...
Ostrog Monastery in the rocks, Montenegro              Source: flu4022 / Adobe Stock

Why Ostrog Monastery is a Shining Beacon for Pilgrims

The small republic of Montenegro has a rich and fascinating history with many astounding historic sites that date back to the Classical period. Perhaps the most famous site in all of Montenegro is...
The 350-year-old gold signet ring found on the lakeshore of Loch Lomond in Scotland.

Detectorist Finds Falsely Executed 17th-Century Courtier’s Gold Signet Ring

Metal detectorists have made a number of extraordinary finds in recent years. A detectorist on vacation in Scotland discovered a ring that belonged to a 17th-century English courtier who was unjustly...
Ancient Sorcery: Antique witch book, black candle and ritual objects.

From Sorcerer to Saint: The Arcane Life and Magickal Times of Saint Cyprian

Of all the saints of the Christian church, one of the most anomalous must surely be St Cyprian who, after his martyrdom in the early 4th century AD, became known as the patron saint of sorcerers...
Interior, Gellért Hill Church

Gellert Hill Cave and an Unusual Church with a Brutal History

Gellért Hill in Budapest, Hungary was named after Bishop Gellért, who was thrown to his death by pagans in the fight against Christianity in 1046. Unusually for statues, the choice of location is...
Syrian archaeologist Khaled al-Asaad. (Fair Use) Palmyra, Temple of Bel. (Arian Zwegers/CC BY 2.0)

Khaled Al-Asaad: Hero of Palmyra Slaughtered for Protecting the Ancient Treasures of Syria

On August 18, 2015, ISIS insurgents executed one of the world’s foremost experts on the ancient city of Palmyra, Khaled al-Asaad. Khaled al-Asaad, director of the archaeological site located at...
Gladiators after the fight, José Moreno Carbonero (1882)

Gladiators: Were any of them Christian?

The persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire is no secret. Christians posed a dangerous threat to the security of the Empire by refusing to worship the pagan gods, whose favor was seen as...
Two Sides to Every Story: The North American Martyrs Shrines and Indigenous/ Roman Catholic Relations – Part II

Two Sides to Every Story: The North American Martyrs Shrines and Indigenous/ Roman Catholic Relations – Part II

Read Part 1 Jerome Lalemant, the second Superior of the Huron mission, said there were so few converts because no Jesuit had been martyred yet. It is stated more than once that if the “glorious crown...
Frescos in the crypt of St. Agatha, including the outstanding inner chapel altar and fresco (center).

Excavation of the Maltese Catacombs of St. Agatha Revealed Some of the Finest 12th and 15th century Frescos in Europe!

Located just some 60 miles of the coast of Sicily, smack in the middle of the Mediterranean lie the Maltese Islands. The three small islands are Malta, it's sister island of Gozo and the small island...
Remains of the original apse built in 1077 was unearthed during excavation work at St Albans Cathedral.

1,000-Year-Old Norman Cathedral Ruins Unearthed Beneath Church in England

The foundations of a Norman cathedral have been found under just 3ft (90cm) of soil during excavations at St Albans Abbey, the oldest place of continuous Christian worship in England. They are dated...
The Colosseum in Rome, once home to the most brutal games in history.

The Colosseum – From Gladiator Fights to Gory Executions and Sea Battles

Gladiatorial fights, sea battles, criminal (and Christian?) executions. These are only a few of the events, if they can even be called such, that happened in the walls of the Colosseum. Known during...
Detail of ‘The Martyrdom of St. Andrew’ (1646-1647) by Charles Le Brun.

The Violent Birth of ‘Martyrdom’ – How the Ancient Concept Informs Modern Religious Violence

Gervase Phillips / The Conversation The word “ martyr ” has evolved into one of the most emotive terms in the English language. The faithful venerate their memories, celebrate their feast days, name...
Image from ‘Vikings’, a medieval drama series airing on The History Channel.

Vikings Beheaded English King and Patron Saint Edmund, but What Happened to his Body?

It’s a 9th century tale involving Vikings, their beheading of a famous English king, and upheaval that led to the burial and reburial of the king’s remains in an unknown spot. And the story is still...
Silver reliquary with skull purportedly Saint Agnes' - Santa Agnese in Agone Church at Piazza Navona in Rome.

The Fascinating Catacomb of Saint Agnes, a Young Christian Martyr Who Died for her Beliefs

Beneath the city of Rome, among its ancient remains, lie many complexes of catacombs. One of the oldest of these is the one dedicated to Saint Agnes. Agnes (or Agatha) was a beautiful young woman who...
Saint, Witch or Both? The Strange Case of St Columba of Sens

Saint, Witch or Both? The Strange Case of St Columba of Sens

The cult of St Columba is connected to France, where she died. She was beheaded in Sens - the major center of her cult now. However, while French religious people pray to the historical figure as an...
Jeweled Skeleton.

The Macabre, Bejeweled Skeletons of the Catacomb Saints

In 1578, the Roman catacombs near Via Salaria were discovered by curious vineyard workers and later fully uncovered by archeologists, revealing a vast unearthly spectacle. Between 500,000 and 750,000...
The Famous Egyptian Martyr Saint Menas and His Shrine at Abu Mina

The Famous Egyptian Martyr Saint Menas and His Shrine at Abu Mina

Saint Menas (spelled variously as Minas, Mina, Mena and Mennas) is an Egyptian saint and martyr, and has the epithets of the Wonder-worker and the Martyr . St. Menas was one of the most well-known...
The holy well or sacred spring of the Great Basilica in Pliska

Tomb of Christian Bulgarian prince martyred by his brother excavated in Pliska

The grave of a prince who was to become the khan of Bulgaria but refused to deny Christ and was then martyred for it by his brother in the year 833, has been excavated in Pliska, Bulgaria. St. Boyan...
The Miracle of the Slave

Researchers chart thousands of miracle stories recorded about saints of the British Isles

A conference which took place in the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic at the University of Cambridge saw the launch of a project to categorise and chart the thousands of miracle stories...