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Apparition of St. Michael

The Apparition of Saint Michael the Archangel

On Mount Gargano

The feast of St. Michael on September 29th, though usually known as “Michaelmas”, has always honored the entire angelic hierarchy to one degree or another. Today’s feast commemorates one of the most famous individual apparitions of St. Michael, on Mount Gargano in Apulia, in southern Italy. In the late fifth century, a herdsman noticed one of his cattle had wandered into a cave on the mountain. He shot an arrow into the cave, hoping to frighten the animal back out, but instead the arrow flew back out towards him. Terrified, the locals reported to their bishop, who ordered his people to pray, fast, and do penance for three days. At the end of the three days, St. Michael appeared to the bishop and told him to dedicate the cave to God. The bishop led his priests and people into the cave, where they discovered a church hewn out of the very rock, lacking only an altar. The bishop soon consecrated the place with an altar, and many miracles have occurred there ever since. The sanctuary on Mount Gargano is one of several great sites dedicated to St. Michael that are providentially aligned in what is often called “St. Michael’s Line” or “the Sword of St. Michael”, spanning Europe and the Holy Land.


Traditional Roman Martyrology for May 8th

ON Mount Gargano, the apparition of the Archangel St. Michael.

At Milan, the birthday of the holy martyr Victor, a Moor. He became a Christian in his youth, and served as soldier in the imperial army. When Maximian wished to force him to offer sacrifice to idols, he persevered with the greatest fortitude in the confession of the Lord. Being first beaten with rods, but without experiencing any pain, through the protection of God, and then having melted lead poured over him, which did him no injury whatever, he at length terminated the career of his glorious martyrdom by being beheaded.

At Constantinople, in the persecution of Diocletian and Maximian, St. Acathius, a centurion, who, being denounced as a Christian by the tribune Firmus, and cruelly tortured at Perinthus by the judge Bibian, was finally condemned to death at Byzantium by the proconsul Flaccinus. His body was afterwards miraculously brought to the shore of Syllacium, where it is preserved with due honor.

At Vienne, St. Denis, bishop and confessor.

At Auxerre, St. Helladius, bishop.

In the diocese of Besancon, St. Peter, bishop.

In Ireland, St. Wiro, bishop.

℣. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

℟. Thanks be to God.

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