Saints and Holy People

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Saint Cyprian (c. 200–258)

Saint Cyprian (c. 200–258)

Patron saint of North Africa

Feast day: September 16

Saint Cyprian was born in Tunisia around the year 200. A lawyer and professor of public speaking for most of his life, Cyprian at age 46, became convinced that Christ told no lies and joined the Christians. Only two years later, he was made bishop of Carthage in North Africa.

He made a rule not to make decisions without consulting his priests and the people in his diocese. Saint Cyprian had become a bishop just as the Roman Empire swerved again toward the persecution of Christians. In 258, Cyprian was beheaded in a field; interestingly, the direct accounts of that day, as filed in the report of the Roman proconsuls, record Cyprian’s courtesy toward his executioner, and the executioner’s courtesy to him. (From Saints Passionate and Peculiar [Saint Mary’s Press]) 

(Image ©hramikona/