Saturday, June 12, 2010

St. Marina (8th century)

Today's saint is kind of quirky. St. Marina lived in 8th century Bithynia. She disguised herself as a male and worked as a monk for 17 years. She was known for being meek and patient.
There are several legends and conflicting stories about St. Marina. It was said that her father wanted to keep her with him at a monastery so dressed her as a boy. Another account mentions a local innkeeper's daughter, who was unwed and pregnant, and chose to blame it on St. Marina (thinking she was a guy).
St. Marina was thrown out of the monastery. She kept quiet and did not reveal her identity. She was later allowed to return to the monastery with the child and was given lowly jobs until her death.
When St. Marina died her relics were taken from Constantinople to Venice, Italy. A church there is named in her honor. Her feast day is June 18.

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