Saint Gerald of Aurillac †909

 In comparison to the Orthodox Church, in the Roman Catholic Church there is more focus on asking certain specified Saints for prayers concerning various, specific needs (for instance, the needs of persons with disability). This is not emphasized as much in the Orthodox Church, though one can find, online, mention of this in Orthodox Christian websites here and there.
Now since the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church were in communion before the schism, Orthodox Christians may choose to ask the intercessions of pre-Schism Western Saints.
Some of the Saints which the Roman Catholic Church has designated as special intercessors for persons with disability lived before the Schism, and are therefore especially worthy of consideration as intercessors for Orthodox Christian persons with disability, as well as for their families and friends who relate to them.

(Most post-schism Western Saints would also  be worthy of consideration. In that we are separated by this tragic schism, though, it would be more fitting to concentrate on the pre-schism Saints who have been designated as intercessors for persons with disability. )

One such Saint is Saint Gerald of Aurillac. Saint Gerald was frequently ill as a child, and later in life he became blind. He was a nobleman and also a layman, as his bishop recommended. He practiced prayer, chastity, and almsgiving. As a nobleman, he had the reputation of being unusally conciliatory and peaceful, as well as merciful to adversaries and criminals. He also spearheaded the establishment of a monastery.

St. Gerald of Aurillac, pray for us.

Here are some websites on St. Gerald of Aurillac:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerald_of_Aurillac – lots of references to other sources as well as a brief account of his life.

http://saints.sqpn.com/saint-gerald-of-aurillac/ – a sparce record; at the bottom, though, are the specific personal areas for which he is an intercessory patron saint.

http://www.vlib.us/medieval/lectures/gerald.html – a critical, academic account.

http://www.diocesephoenix.org/disability/Disabilities.html – source of the icon. Interestingly, it is the website of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix Office for the Evangelization with persons with disabilities.

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