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Saints Of The Day For October 30: Saint Germanus, bishop of Capua

Saint Germanus’s Story: data on Saint Germanus are few and not always certain. A Life dedicated to him dating from around 873 reports that Germano was the son of Amanzio and Giuliana, wealthy citizens of Capua

When his father died and he received his mother’s permission, Germanus sold his entire estate and distributed it to the poor, to devote himself totally to the spiritual life

When the bishop of Capua, Alexander, died, he became his successor in 519.

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The Acacian Schism

Emperor Justin I (518) and his nephew Justinian, asked Pope Ormisda (514-523) to attempt the reunification of the Church, which his predecessors had failed to restore after the Acacian schism (from Acacius, Patriarch of Constantinople).

Pope Ormisda did this through the delegation he sent, led by the bishop of Capua, Germanus

The chronicles of the time bear witness to this: passing through Epirus and Thessalonica, the legates arrived in Constantinople triumphantly welcomed.

On Maundy Thursday, in front of the patriarch and the bishops, Germanus read the Pope’s pamphlet with which the schism was closed.

The legates then remained in Byzantium for a year to accompany the path of reconciliation.

St Benedict’s dream

St Benedict, while in prayer at Monte Cassino, saw in a vision the soul of Germanus ascending to heaven carried by angels.

Delighted, he sent some monks to Capua and received the news that Bishop German had died at the same time as he had had the vision.

Germanus died on 30 October 541 (?)

At first the body was placed in the church of St Stephen and later moved to the church dedicated to him in Capua.

In 866, Ludwig II, having stayed in Capua for about a year, wanted to take the body of St. German with him.

Passing through Eulogimenopoli – a town founded by a monk from Montecassino – he left some relics there and from this centre the cult to this saint spread, so much so that the town took the name of St. Germanus, until 1863, when it was changed to that of ancient Cassino.

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