A soldier turned bishop, he served in the Roman army until a vision of Christ made him change his sword for a crosier.
Despite being a disheveled soul dressed in dirty rags, with bad hair and a range of unpleasant odors, he was kind to the poor and extremely holy — so the citizens cried out for him to become Bishop of the town.
Of course he turned them down with the usual excuse: ‘I’m just not worthy enough’. But that didn’t wash with his adoring public. They practically kidnapped him so he could attend the ceremony. He became Bishop of Tours.
The other bishops weren’t too pleased at this hermit-like apparition among their ranks, especially when he chose to perform his official duties from a cell.
As an ex-soldier, having given up bloodshed he opposed the execution of heretics. In truth he wasn’t really cut out for official business, and eventually sneaked off for a bit of peace and quiet. A bunch of devoted followers sneaked off with him and together they all founded the small monastery of Marmoutier in France.
One of the first monastic centers, this attracted ascetics and apostles and gave them the ‘get up and go’ to ‘spread the word’ throughout Gaul.
Our Saint then got up and went himself — to the countryside where legions of ordinary honest Pagan farmers were doing their level best not to be converted to Christianity. In some cases they even pretended to be Pagan Gods to put him off, but by a selection of miracles he was usually able to overcome their objections.
Now he is patron saint of many things, including Soldiers, Cavalry and Horse Riders, Alcoholics and Wine Makers, Beggars, Poor People – and Geese.
St. Martin of Tours Facts and Figures
Name: Martin of Tours
Pronunciation: Coming soon
Alternative names: Martin of Marmoutier, Martinus Turonensis
Birth and Death Dates: 323-397
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present
Role: Unknown at present
Good/Evil Rating: Unknown at present
Popularity index: 88
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Article last updated on April 07, 2019 by the Godchecker data dwarves.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders
References: Coming soon.