Saint Fiacre

St. Fiacre (d. 670 A.D.) was born in Ireland and was raised from childhood in an Irish monastery. There he grew in knowledge as well as holiness, and became a priest. He retired to a hermitage to live in prayer and solitude, but men began to flock to him to imitate his way of life and become his disciples. To escape them, Fiacre left Ireland to establish a new hermitage in France. He went to the bishop and asked for land to plant a garden to grow food as well as herbs for medicinal healing, a science which he studied in the monastery. The bishop agreed to give Fiacre as much land as he could entrench. Fiacre picked a plot of land and walked around its perimeter, dragging his shovel behind him. Wherever his spade touched the ground, the land was miraculously cleared and the soil became entrenched. St. Fiacre lived a life of great mortification in prayer, fasting, vigils, and manual labor in his garden. Disciples gathered around him again, and soon formed a monastery. St. Fiacre then built an oratory in honor of the Virgin Mary, a hospice in which he received strangers, and a cell for his own dwelling. His fame for performing miracles became widespread, and his garden became a place of pilgrimage for centuries for those seeking healing. St. Fiacre is best known as the patron of gardeners, florists, and cab drivers. His feast day is August 30th.
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