St Martin of Tours

Fr Paul begins by reading today’s Gospel from Luke (17:11-19) in which Jesus heals the ten lepers. He says that today we also celebrate the life of St Martin of Tours.

Martin was born in the Roman province of Pannonia, which is regarded as modern-day Hungary, in about 316. Martin was educated in Parvia, Italy. He was baptised and then he left the army and spent time as a hermit on an island off the Ligurian Coast. He founded a monastery in western France and was guided in that monastery by St Hilary.

Later Martin was ordained a priest and then became the Bishop of Tours. He founded other monasteries, educated the clergy, and preached the Gospel to the poor.  He died in 397.

A famous story about St Martin is that when he was still in the army in Amiens he gave half his military cloak to a beggar. Later he had a dream in which the beggar revealed himself as Jesus Christ.

Fr Paul says, as we celebrate St Martin’s life, we might ask ourselves ‘How can I help those in need around me?’