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Forty Martyrs of England and Wales

Forty Martyrs of England and Wales

Feast date: Oct 25

This feast, the feast of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales, honors the hundreds of British men and women who died for their faith in wake of the dispute between the Pope and King Henry VIII during the 16th century. Many loyal Catholics were tortured and killed by the British state from 1535 to 1679.

In 1970, the Vatican selected 40 martyrs, men and women, lay and religious, to represent the full group of about 300. Each martyr has their own day of memorial, but they are all remembered as a group on October 25.

St. Crispin and St. Crispinian

St. Crispin and St. Crispinian

Feast date: Oct 25

Sts. Crispin and Crispinian were brothers. Together, they evangelized Gaul in the middle of the third century. Working from Soissons, they preached the streets by day and made shoes by night. Their charity, piety, and contempt of material things impressed the locals and many were converted to Christianity.

The brothers refused to yield to the persecutors of the Faith who wanted Crispin and Crispinian to apostatize. They were both beheaded in Rome ca. 286 A.D. They are the patrons of  cobblers, glove makers, lace makers, lace workers, leather workers, saddle makers, saddlers, shoemakers, tanners, and weavers.

A great church was built at Soissons in the 6th century in their honor.