Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Saint Who Carried His Own Head

There is no doubt that Catholic Saints have been attributed to many miracles throughout the centuries. Many may not know, but in order for the Catholic Church to recognize a person as a saint, three miracles must be attributed to that person after their death. There is a story of a saint, who is said to have accomplished a miracle before his soul left his body.

St. Denis was the first bishop of Paris who was sent from Italy to convert Gaul. Paris was still a Roman City and the conversations that St. Denis and his companions Rusticus and Eleutherius were having begun to alarm the pagan priests. The priests took immediate action and St. Denis and his companions were arrested and sentenced to death. Unfortunately, persecution and martyerdom are common among the courageous saints, but something truly miraculous occurred after St. Denis was executed.

St. Denis, Rusticus, and Eleutherius were beheaded on the highest hill in Paris called Montmarte which was believe to be a druidic holy place. St. Denis’ companions died immediately; however, St. Denis did not. It is said that St. Denis stood up, picked up his head and carried his head 6 miles while preaching a sermon.
The feat was absolutely extraordinary. The place where he finally collapsed and died is now the location of St. Denis’ Basilica. Statues of St. Denis are found throughout Paris depicting him holding his head in cephalophore fashion. His likeness even graces the front of Notre Dame Cathedral. St. Denis can be invoked to intercede for us against diabolical possessions and headaches.

Kerri L. Schultz

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