Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

Short Cuts

Image of St. Theophanes

Facts

Feastday: March 12

Birth: 758

Death: 818


St. Theophanes Abbot and Confessor MARCH 12 A.D. 818     His father, who was governor of the isles of the Archipelago, died when he was only three years old, and left him heir to a very great estate, under the guardianship of the Iconoclast emperor, Constantine Copronymus. Amidst the dangers of such an education, a faithful pious servant instilled into his tender mind the most generous sentiments of virtue and religion. Being arrived at man's estate, he was compelled by his friends to take a wife; but on the day of his marriage, he spoke in so moving a manner to his consort on the shortness and uncertainty of this life, that they made a mutual vow of perpetual chastity. She afterwards became a nun, and he for his part built two monasteries in Mysia one of which, called Megal-Agre, near the Propontis, he governed himself. He lived, as it were, dead to the world and the flesh, in the greatest purity of life, and in the exercises of continual mortification and prayer. In 787, he assisted at the second council of Nice, where all admired to see one, whom they had formerly known in so much worldly grandeur, now so meanly clad, so modest, and so full of self-contempt as he appeared to be. He never laid aside his hair shirt; his bed was a mat, and his pillow a stone; his sustenance was hard coarse bread and water. At fifty years of age, he began to be grievously afflicted with the stone and nephritic colic; but bore with cheerfulness the most excruciating pains of his distemper. The emperor Leo, the Armenian, in 814, renewed the persecution against the church, and abolished the use of holy images, which had been restored under Constantine and Irene. Knowing the great reputation and authority of Theophanes, he endeavored to gain him by civilities and crafty letters. The saint discovered the hook concealed under his alluring baits, which did not, however, hinder him from obeying the emperor's summons to Constantinople, though at that time under a violent: fit of the stone; which distemper, for the remaining part of his life, allowed him very short intervals of ease. The emperor sent him this message. "From your mild and obliging disposition, I flatter myself you are come to confirm my sentiments on the point in question with your suffrage, it your readiest way for obtaining my favor, and with that the greatest riches and honors for yourself, your monastery, and relations, which it is in the power of an emperor to bestow. But if you refuse to comply with my desires in this affair, you will incur my highest displeasure, and draw misery and disgrace on yourself and friends." The holy man returned for answer: "Being now far advanced in years, and much broken with pains and infirmities, I have neither relish nor inclination for any of these things which I despised for Christ's sake in my youth, when I was in a condition to enjoy the world. As to my monastery and my friends, I recommend them to God. If you think to frighten me into a compliance by your threats, as a child is awed by the rod, you only lose your labor. For though unable to walk, and subject to many other corporeal infirmities, I trust in Christ that he will enable me to undergo, in defense of his cause, the sharpest tortures you can inflict on my weak body." The emperor employed several persons to endeavor to overcome his resolution, but in vain: so seeing himself vanquished by his constancy, he confined him two years in a close stinking dungeon, where he suffered much from his distemper and want of necessaries. He was also cruelly scourged. having received three hundred stripes. In 818, he was removed out of his dungeon, and banished into the isle of Samothracia, where he died in seventeen days after his arrival, on the 12th of March. His relics were honored by many miraculous cures. He has left us his Chronographia, or short history from the year 824, the first of Dioclesian, where George Syncellus left off, to the year 813. His imprisonment did not allow him leisure to polish the style.


More about St. Theophanes from Wikipedia

St. Theophanes Comments




More Saints





Browse Saints by Category


Popular Saints

Rank

Saint

63.

Image of St. Francis de Sales

St. Francis de Sales

Born in France in 1567, Francis was a patient man. He knew for thirteen years that he had a vocation to the priesthood before he mentioned it to his family. When his father said that he ... continue reading

64.

Image of St. Juan Diego

St. Juan Diego

Juan Diego was born in 1474 in the calpulli or ward of Tlayacac in Cuauhtitlan, which was established in 1168 by Nahua tribesmen and conquered by the Aztec lord Axayacatl in 1467; and was ... continue reading

65.

Image of St. John Bosco

St. John Bosco

What do dreams have to with prayer? Aren't they just random images of our mind? In 1867 Pope Pius IX was upset with John Bosco because he wouldn't take his dreams seriously enough. Nine ... continue reading

All Popular Saints

Saint of the Day

Image of St. Martha

St. Martha

"Jesus loved Martha and Mary and Lazarus." This unique statement in John's gospel tells us of the special relationship Jesus had with Martha, her sister, and her brother. Apparently ... continue reading

More Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day by E-Mail

Saint of the Day newsletter icon

Learn about the lives of the saints and other saint resources, including a calendar, over 5,000 saint biographies, our most popular saints, and a list of patron saints. 7 days / week. See Sample


Required


Female Saints

Image of St. Anastasia

St. Anastasia

- "excerpts taken from Victories of the Martyrs," by St. Alphonsus de Liguori Taken from the Acts of St. Anastasia, who is mentioned in the Canon of the Mass, and commemorated by the Church [old calendar] on December 25, St. Anastasia was a spiritual child of St. ... continue reading

More Female Saints



Saint Calendar
Saint Feast Days
Saint Fun Facts

Angels

Image of St. Michael the Archangel

St. Michael the Archangel

St. Michael the Archangel - Feast day - September 29th The name Michael signifies "Who is like to God?" and was the warcry of the good angels in the battle fought in heaven against satan and his followers. Holy Scripture describes St. Michael as "one of the chief ... continue reading


Image of St. Gabriel, the Archangel

St. Gabriel, the Archangel

The name Gabriel means "man of God," or "God has shown himself mighty." It appears first in the prophesies of Daniel in the Old Testament. The angel announced to Daniel the prophecy of the seventy weeks. His name also occurs in the apocryphal book of Henoch. He was the ... continue reading



Saints Fun Facts

Saints Fun Facts for St. Dymphna

St. Dymphna

Dymphna was fourteen when her mother died. Damon is said to have been afflicted with a mental illness, brought on by his grief. He sent messengers throughout his town and other lands to find some ... continue reading

Saints Fun Facts for St. Zita

St. Zita

St. Zita was born into a poor but holy Christian family. Her older sister became a Cistercian nun and her uncle Graziano was a hermit whom the local people regarded as a saint. Zita herself always ... continue reading



Christian Saints & Heroes

Image of Bonaventure was a friend and a disciple of Francis. When he looked at Francis he saw Jesus Christ. Bonaventure, like his friend Francis, was also a mystic. To him the Spirit of Francis is the Spirit of Jesus and

In the Major Legend, St. Bonaventure Points us to St Francis - and the Lord Jesus Christ

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

On July 15th in the Liturgical Calendar of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, we commemorate the life, holiness, work and death of a great Bishop and Doctor named Bonaventure. He was born in 1218, became a Franciscan Friar in 1243, and died in 1274. A friend ... continue reading

More Christian Saints & Heroes


Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Gospel, John 11:19-27
19 and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 29th, 2014 Image

St. Martha
July 29: "Jesus loved Martha and Mary and Lazarus." This unique ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter