Athleta Christi

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"Athleta Christi" (Latin : "Champion of Christ") was a class of Early Christian soldier martyrs, of whom the most familiar example is one such "military saint," Saint Sebastian.

Martyr person who suffers persecution and death for advocating, refusing to renounce, and/or refusing to advocate a belief or cause, usually a religious one

A martyr is someone who suffers persecution and death for advocating, renouncing, refusing to renounce, or refusing to advocate a belief or cause as demanded by an external party. This refusal to comply with the presented demands results in the punishment or execution of the martyr by the oppressor. Originally applied only to those who suffered for their religious beliefs, the term has come to be used in connection with people killed for a political cause.

Military saint Wikimedia list article

The military saints or warrior saints of the Early Christian Church are Christian saints who were soldiers in the Roman Army during the persecution of Christians, especially the Diocletian persecution of AD 303–313.

Saint Sebastian 3rd-century Christian saint and martyr

Saint Sebastian was an early Christian saint and martyr. According to traditional belief, he was killed during the Roman emperor Diocletian's persecution of Christians, initially being tied to a post or tree and shot with arrows, though this did not kill him. He was, according to tradition, rescued and healed by Saint Irene of Rome, which became a popular subject in 17th-century painting. In all versions of the story, shortly after his recovery he went to Diocletian to warn him about his sins, and as a result was clubbed to death. He is venerated in the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church.

Contents

Usage

Since the 15th century, the title has been a political one, granted by Popes to men who have led military campaigns defending Christianity. The militant Catholic hymn Athleta Christi nobilis ("Noble Champion of the Lord"), a hymn for Matins on May 18, the feast of Saint Venantius, was written in the 17th century by an unknown author. The medieval precursors of the hymn are numerous and include hymns, responsories and antiphons dedicated to many saints and martyrs, even non-militant ones such as Cosmas and Damian. [1]

Pope leader of the Catholic Church

The pope, also known as the supreme pontiff, is the Bishop of Rome and ex officio leader of the worldwide Catholic Church. Since 1929, the pope has also been head of state of Vatican City, a city-state enclaved within Rome, Italy. The current pope is Francis, who was elected on 13 March 2013, succeeding Benedict XVI.

Christianity is an Abrahamic Universal religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as described in the New Testament. Its adherents, known as Christians, believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and savior of all people, whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament.

Matins is a canonical hour of Christian liturgy.

Those who have held the title include:

Louis I of Hungary King of Hungary, Poland and Croatia

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John Hunyadi was a leading Hungarian military and political figure in Central and Southeastern Europe during the 15th century. According to most contemporary sources, he was the son of a noble family of Romanian ancestry. He mastered his military skills on the southern borderlands of the Kingdom of Hungary that were exposed to Ottoman attacks. Appointed voivode of Transylvania and head of a number of southern counties, he assumed responsibility for the defense of the frontiers in 1441.

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References

  1. Latrobe article Archived January 9, 2005, at the Wayback Machine
  2. The Fulfilled Promise: A Documentary Account of Religious Persecution in Albania; By Gjon Sinishta; page 6.