Tuesday, March 30, 2010

St. Zosimus of Siracusa (c. 570 to 660)

Long before everyone you met called themselves a bard, one of my friends, Alberto, would say "I'm a poet," when asked his occupation.
This was nearly 20 years ago. He had a degree in English and worked the night shift for a pharmaceutical company. The whole thing sounded funny at the time. Maybe because he was from Italy (Siracusa, Sicily) and I could picture a Giancarlo Giannini-type character in some wacky movie.
"You have to experience excruciating pain in order to be a good writer, Marilyn," he would say to me.
Well, I didn't agree with him, but I let him do his "poet speak" thing anyway.
That was until the day he read me his piece about menstruation. Then, I decided he'd make a better acquaintance than friend.
One of my biggest regrets about my three vacations to Italy, is that I never made it to Sicily. I was warned that I'd be mugged or attacked because I was a female travelling alone. I heard the same thing about Naples but I went anyway. It would have taken a long time to get to Sicily which is the only reason I didn't go.
St. Zosimus served as the bishop of Siracusa in 649. He was born in Sicily in c.570. At age seven, he was taken from the family farm to live at the monastery of Saint Lucy (Santa Lucia). While there his job was to guard saint's tomb.
In his years before becoming bishop, St. Zosimus was a monk then an abbot. His mission was to teach and help the poor.
St. Zosimus died in 660. His feast day is March 30.

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