Saint Thalelaeus (also known as Thallelaios or Thalleleus, died 284), physician and holy martyr for the faith. Thalelaeus was martyred at Aegae, in Cilicia, after a life of Christian ministry and service to the poor of his community. He earned the nickname, “the merciful,” given his charitable treatment and service of the poor and ill. At the time of his martyrdom, two Roman executioners, Asterius and Alexander, were killed with him, due to their display of compassion and admiration for the courageous holy man.
Thalelaeus was born in Lebanon, the son of a Lebanese Bishop and Roman mother. From an early age, he displayed the curiosity and skill that befitted a physician, and his father, observing this, offered to him the finest of educations. During this time, Thalelaeus was also instructed in the ways of the Church, and his faith and zeal for Christ continued to blossom.
“of the most high cometh healing.” Through his ministry of charity, preaching, and medicine, he brought many to conversion. Soon, miracles of healing and cure began to be reported.
Of course, all of the attention that Thalelaeus was garnering angered the pagan rulers of Lebanon, and they soon determined to imprison and kill him. Thalelaeus continued to travel through the country, however, offering his works of charity to those in need, demonstrating great humility and dedication. Before long, he was seized while traveling home, and brought before the Theodore, the governor of the province of Cilicia. Theodore took great pleasure in the persecution of Christians, and eagerly looked forward to the torture and destruction of this great man. However, his pride in his debating skills led him to challenge Saint Thalelaeus to a debate regarding religion.
"I am a Christian, a native of Lebanon. I am studying medicine under the physician Macarius. During a former persecution against Christians in Lebanon, I was brought before the prefect Tiberius, and barely escaped execution. But now that I stand before this court, do with me as you will. I wish to die for Christ my Savior and my God, and hope to endure all torments with His help."
Theodore ordered the holy man to be tortured, expecting a quick victory and recanting of the Christian faith. However, he remained steadfast in his conviction, praying throughout torture, and earning the admiration of his executioners. Eventually, he was ordered executed, and when he was unable to be drowned, was beheaded. The relics of the holy martyr Thalelaeus lie in the church of Saint Agathonicus of Constantinople and many miracles are attributed to his intercession.
saintly champion and healer,
intercede with our merciful God to grant our souls remission of sins.
Year 2: Day 139 of 365
Prayer Intentions: Generous sharing of our gifts with those around us.
Requested Intentions: Husband’s freedom from illness (L); Personal intentions (S); Successful passing of dental board examination (P); Blessings on a family (Z); Successful permanent employment (C); Healing of a son with autism (J); Son’s successful employment (L); For the intentions of family and relatives, for the Carthusian community (T); For personal intentions (A); Restoration of lost hearing (C); Resolution of relational and financial challenges (S); Comfort following loss of husband, security for family, assistance with housing (B); Healing and return of brother (O); Successful hermitage foundation (S); Support from family, permission to marry (H); Recovery of wife following surgery, freedom from depression (W); Protection and recovery of mentally ill daughter (J); Successful resolution to legal proceedings (N); Freedom from worry and successful employment (M); For successful sale of home and freedom from debt (J); Freedom from pain and illness (E).
Why pray the Rosary every day for a year?
Each time the Blessed Virgin has appeared-- whether it be to Saint Bernadette Soubirous at Lourdes; to Lucia, Jacinta, and Francisco at Fatima; or to Mariette Beco at Banneux-- she has asserted the importance, saving grace, and power of praying the Holy Rosary on a daily basis. Based upon her words, the Rosary is penance and conversion for sinners, a pathway to peace, an end to war, and a powerful act of faith in Jesus Christ. Pope Paul VI presented the Rosary as a powerful means to reach Christ "not merely with Mary but indeed, insofar as this is possible to us, in the same way as Mary, who is certainly the one who thought about Him more than anyone else has ever done."
To show us how this is done, perhaps no one has been more eloquent than the great Cardinal Newman, who wrote: "The great power of the Rosary consists in the fact that it translates the Creed into Prayer. Of course, the Creed is already in a certain sense a prayer and a great act of homage towards God, but the Rosary brings us to meditate again on the great truth of His life and death, and brings this truth close to our hearts. Even Christians, although they know God, usually fear rather than love Him. The strength of the Rosary lies in the particular manner in which it considers these mysteries, since all our thinking about Christ is intertwined with the thought of His Mother, in the relations between Mother and Son; the Holy Family is presented to us, the home in which God lived His infinite love."
As Mary said at Fatima, "Jesus wants to use you to make Me known and loved. He wishes to establish the devotion to My Immaculate Heart throughout the world. I promise salvation to whoever embraces it; these souls will be dear to God, like flowers put by Me to adorn his throne."