This calendar of saints is drawn from several denominations, sects, and traditions. Although it will no longer be updated daily, the index on the right will guide visitors to a saint celebrated on any day they choose. Additional saints will be added as they present themselves to Major.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

December 18 -- Feast of Saint Flavitus of Champagne

Cuvée Saint-Flavy
Disclaimer:  Wikipedia says the feast is December 16, but the medieval religion folks at JISCmail say it is the 18th.  Since both sources agree that his dies mortalis is the 18th and he is not yet in the Roman Martyrology, I figure I am on safe ground to celebrate him today. 

Flavitus was a sixth century Lombard who got hauled away as a prisoner of war.  Lombards and Franks, man... did they ever get along?  Even now, do they really get along?  A warlord (?) from Champagne brought both Flavitus and his wife, Apronia, home with him. 

Seven shopping days left
For a while, the life of Flavitus ran parallel to the life of Joseph the Patriarch.  True, Flavitus' brothers didn't sell him into slavery, but he was a captive in a foreign land who became a trusted servant.  Montanus, the master, eventually promoted Flavitus to be intendant of his castle, much as Joseph became the chamberlain of Potiphar, Pharaoh's captain of the guard.  Like Joseph, Flavitus had an opportunity to take a tumble with his master's wife.  Like Joe, he took a pass.  Mrs. Montanus, like Mrs. Potiphar, took umbrage and bore some false witness against her reluctant objet d'amour.  Joe was imprisoned, but being a competent, loyal, and charming fellow, he was soon the warden of the prison to which he was confined.  Flavitus was exiled to the forest, but set himself up herding swine and soon had a powerful lot of bacon.  Joseph interpreted a couple of dreams and traded up to become the chief civil servant of all Egypt.  Flavitus opened a spring and used the water to start healing folks: blind, physically ill, demonically possessed -- all who brought their faith and infirmities were healed.  Even Montanus showed up and got healed.

That last one won Flavitus his release from servitude in the woods.  To celebrate their emancipation, Apronia immediately joined a convent.  Soon after, Flavitus was ordained by a priest named Lupus.  He set up back in the woods, living the life of a hermit but offering religious service to any passing through the woods. 

The monastery in the Champagne region (near Sens?) where his relics are kept is known as Saint-Flavy, as is the sparkling wine of the area.  Whether this observation is related or not is up to you: there are seven shopping days left until Christmas. 

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