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Sunday, July 22, 2018
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Daily Saint

February 5: St. Agatha

A beautiful Christian girl named Agatha lived in Sicily in the third century. The governor heard of Agatha's beauty and brought her to his palace. He wanted to make her commit sins against purity, but she was brave and would not give in. "My Lord Jesus Christ," she prayed, "you see my heart and you know my desire. You alone must have me, because I am all yours. Save me from this evil man. Make me worthy of winning out over the devil."

The governor tried sending Agatha to the house of a wicked woman. Perhaps the girl would change for the worse. But Agatha had great trust in God and prayed all the time. She kept herself pure. She would not listen to the evil suggestions of the woman and her daughters. After a month, she was brought back to the governor. He 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 he realized that she would not sin, the governor became angry. He had Agatha whipped and tortured. As she was being carried back to prison she whispered, "Lord, my Creator, you have protected me from the cradle. You have taken me from the love of the world and given me patience to suffer. Now receive my soul."

Agatha died a martyr at Catania, Sicily, in the year 250.

Reflection: "She teaches by her example to hasten to the true Good, God alone." –St. Methodius