Fr Paul reads from the Gospel of Mark (6: 30-34) in which Jesus encourages the disciples, after returning from their ministry, to go to a quiet place and rest. Afterwards, Fr Paul shares a little about the life of St Agatha, whose memorial we celebrate today.Fr Paul notes that Agatha was beautiful woman who had devoted herself completely to God. Yet, a man who desired her had her arrested during the persecution of Decius (250-253AD). Despite being arrested and being held prisoner, firstly, in a brothel where she was assaulted numerous times and then in a prison as an actual prisoner Agatha would not deny her faith or her commitment to God. Therefore, after a time, Agatha was put to death and martyred at Catania in Sicily and then devotion to her was widespread in the early Church. She is also one of the women mentioned in Eucharistic Prayer I, which is also called the Roman Canon of the Mass. Agatha is the patron saint of Breast Cancer patients and rape victims. And so today was we celebrate her life Fr Paul says we ask St Agatha, pray for us.
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