Feast Day is February 5th
Virgin and Early Martyr of the Church
Patron Saint of Sicily, Bell Founders, breast cancer, earthquakes, Nurses, and against fires.
Agatha lived in Sicily and was a Christian born to a rich noble family around the year 231. From her very early years, the notably beautiful Agatha dedicated her life to God. The governor heard of Agatha’s beauty and brought her to his palace. He wanted to make her commit sins, but she was brave and would not give in. “My Lord Jesus Christ,” she prayed, “you see my heart and you know my desire. I am all yours. Save me from this evil man. Make me worthy of winning out over the devil.”
The governor, named Quintianus, sent Agatha to the house of a wicked woman and hoped she would become bad too. But Agatha had great trust in God and prayed all the time. She kept herself pure. She would not listen to the evil ideas of the woman and her daughters. Agatha never lost her confidence in God, even though she suffered a month of assaults and efforts to get her to abandon her vow to God and go against her virtue.
After a month, she was brought back to the governor and Quintianus tried again to win her. “You are a noblewoman,” he said kindly. “Why have you lowered yourself to be a humble Christian?” “Even though I am a noble,” answered Agatha, “I am a slave of Jesus Christ.” “Then what does it really mean to be noble?” the governor asked. Agatha answered, “It means to serve God.”
When Quintianus realized that Agatha would not sin, he sentenced her to be burnt at the stake, but an earthquake saved her from that fate; instead, she was sent to prison. In prison she was tortured, badly beaten, and given no food or medical care. But the Lord gave her all the care she needed. He was her Sacred Physician and protector. Agatha had a vision of the apostle, St. Peter, who comforted her and healed her wounds through his prayers. After four days, Quintianus ignored the miraculous cure of her wounds and he had her tortured once again. When she was returned to prison, Agatha prayed, “Lord, my Creator, you have ever protected me from the cradle; you have taken me from the love of the world, and given me patience to suffer: receive now my soul.” Agatha soon died a martyr at Catania, Sicily, in the year 251.
St. Agatha, also known as Agatha of Sicily, is one of the most highly venerated virgin martyrs of the Catholic Church.
Another Saint who’s feast day we celebrate in February is St. Blaise! Maybe you received a blessing of your throat at mass last weekend? Learn more about Saint Blaise and watch this short video!