Sts. Cyril And Methodius July 7

top_of_statue_of_saints_cyril_and_methodius_in_tc599ebc3adc48dSts. Cyril and Methodius were brothers, born of a distinguished family in Thessalonica. The Emperor Michael III sent them into Moravia, where in a short time they brought the nation to the faith of Christ. When a favourable report of what they had done was brought to Rome, Pope St. Nicholas I ordered the brothers to come there. At Rome they were consecrated bishops by Adrian, Nicholas’s successor. A short time later, however, Cyril died a most holy death in Rome, and Methodius went back to Moravia and increased his efforts on behalf of Catholicism. Moreover, he confirmed the Bohemians, the Pannonians, the Bulgarians and the Dalmatians in the Christian faith, and worked hard to bring the Corinthians to the worship of the one true God. He also brought the light of the Gospel to Poland and, as some writers say, founded the bishopric of Lemberg. Then he went to Muscovy properly so called and established the pontifical see of Kiev. At length he came back to Moravia, exhorted the clergy and people to virtue with his last words, and died peacefully. The feast day of Cyril and Methodius, already celebrated by the Slavic peoples, was extended to the universal Church by Leo XIII.