St Vincent & The Raven T
When the Roman Emperor began persecuting Christians in Spain, St. Vincent was arrested and confined to the prison of Valencia. He was offered freedom if he would show his allegiance to Rome by throwing the Holy Scripture into the fire.
He refused, informing the judge that he was ready to suffer everything for his faith.
His boldness so angered the judge that it was ordered St. Vincent be inflicted of every sort of torture practiced by the Romans.
He was stretched on the rack, his flesh was torn with iron hooks, his wounds were rubbed with salt and he was burned alive upon a red-hot gridiron. Though during his martyrdom he preserved such peace and tranquillity that it astonished his jailer, who repented from his sins and was converted.
Finally, St. Vincent was cast into prison and laid on a floor scattered with broken pottery, where he died.
His dead body was thrown outside, where miraculously, ravens stood guard and protected it from being devoured by vultures and scavangers until his followers could recover the body for proper burial.
His body was then taken to what is now known as Cape St. Vincent, where a shrine was erected over his grave. The ravens continued to guard his burial site, having such massive flocks encircle it that during the time of Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula, the Arab geographer Al-Idrisi noted this constant guard and named the place كنيسة الغراب "Kanīsah al-Ghurāb" which means, Church of the Raven.
King Afonso I of Portugal (1139–1185) had the body of the St. Vincent exhumed in 1173 and brought it by ship to the Lisbon Cathedral, where it lays today.
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