Feast of St. Agnes, Early Christian Martyr

St. Agnes lived a short life of dramatic faith and died a martyrs death around 300 AD at the age of 12 or 13. She turned away many suitors with the words “Jesus Christ is my only Spouse”. The young men (including the Governor’s son) whose offers of marriage were rejected by Agnes became so angry that they denounced her as a Christian to the authorities. Eventually she was condemned to death — some accounts say that when she was tied to the stake her body refused to burn, so eventually she had to be beheaded. Her blood was then soaked up with cloths by fellow Christians. Her strong faith at a young age can be an inspiration to young people and her single-hearted devotion to God can encourage all of us to sacrifice whatever God is asking us to give Him. The word Agnes means lamb, so she is often pictured with a lamb in Christian imagery, as she is below in this image from the cloister at the Church of the Transfiguration.

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