In solidarity with Agatha

A thought on St Agatha (Feast day 5th February)

Agatha Hollesley

Carved image of St Agatha
All Ss, Hollesley, Suffolk

Agatha is one of the best loved and most invoked saints. Celebrations at Catania, in Sicily, believed to be her final resting place, are extraordinary to this day, not least for the sheer number of people taking part. Yet virtually nothing is known of Agatha’s life. The legendary Acts of Agatha relate how she was abused, and forced into a brothel. The account tells of the horrific torture and death she suffered at the hands of brutal men.

For many Christian women Agatha is an inspiration. A strong woman who stood up to her abusers, and her witness was to death. The powerful woman, Agatha, is honoured throughout the history of the church as one who stood up for her God given identity as a woman, and died because of her courageous action.

Today in our world there are many Agathas – women who suffer the forms of violence and cruelty Agatha suffered. Much of the violence and cruelty is hidden in the home. Recalling Agatha’s witness challenges the church of today to speak out against violence and abuse to women and stand in solidarity with all abused women here, in our own community, and throughout the world.

(For an earlier blog post on Agatha click here)

About stchrysostoms

St Chrysostom’s is an Anglican (Church of England) parish church in Manchester, UK. We’re an inclusive, diverse and welcoming faith community rejoicing in our Anglo Catholic tradition, where people of many differing backgrounds make friends. Find our Facebook group at
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1 Response to In solidarity with Agatha

  1. Fr John S. Toon says:

    Good to meet u in cyber! Last century I was a student in U of M! Now am Padre to 10 branches of the Royal Cdn Legion, The Cdn Navy Vetrns, Korean Vets. Am Anglo-Catholic Priest serving in Oshawa Ontario. I will remember S. Agatha’s in tomorrow’s Mass. Blessings…
    Fr John Toon +

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