Saint of the Day

May 23: Saint Michael of Synnada

Saint Michael of Synnada was just a young man when he moved to Constantinople (modern Turkey) in the late eighth century. He studied under one future saint (Tarasius) and became friends with another (Theophylact) at that time. He lived as a monk, was ordained a priest, and then was named bishop of Synnada.

As a prominent bishop of the Church, Michael attended the Second Council of Nicaea in the year 787. Over the next two decades, he served on important diplomatic missions for the Byzantine emperor to a Muslim caliph, the pope, and Charlemagne, the king of the Franks. When a new Byzantine emperor began mercilessly punishing those who used icons to pray—a heresy later known as iconoclasm—Michael was put in prison in the year 815. His friends, Saint Tarasius and Theophylact, also suffered persecution for their opposition to the emperor’s iconoclasm. Michael survived imprisonment and died in 826 of natural causes.

Saint Michael, help me to find holy friends.