October 29

St. Narcissus

Saint Narcissus

Life and Dedication

Like many Saints that existed during the time of the early Church, SaintNarcissus lacks several details of his life in writing.

Saint Narcissus lived during a time where the Church experienced severalchallenges. Not only were the people susceptible to the diseases thatplagued them without a cure, limiting their ability to travel andpreach, they were also persecuted for their faith.

Regardless of all these problems, Saint Narcissus stood firm in hisfaith and devotion to God.

Saint Narcissus was born around 99 A.D. This date can not truly beconfirmed. However, this is popularly accepted as a measure to go by.

Narcissus was thought to have been born in Jerusalem however there is nodata to prove this. Other than these pieces of information that we’reprobably strewn together from pieces of historical writings, there is nomore information about him.

There is no record about Saint Narcissus’ family or what he did earlierin his life. In fact, his story kicks off when he was 80 years old.

When he was around 80 years old, Saint Narcissus was made Bishop ofJerusalem. He was a holy man and was highly respected in his city.

Around 195 A.D, Narcissus and Theophilus who was then bishop of Caesareatogether presided over a council. The council was called concerning whatday was fit for Easter celebrations.

At the Council, it was decided that Easter would always be celebrated onSunday.

Saint Narcissus was a man who was said to have performed miracles. SaintEusebius wrote about this, alleging a particular miracle to Narcissus.

Eusebius wrote that on Easter-eve, the Church lamps had run out of oil.This was bad news because the lighting of the lamps was important to thecelebrations.

Instead of being sad, Saint Narcissus had asked that the empty lamps andpitchers of water be brought from the wells. He then prayed for thewater and poured them into the lamp.

The water was said to have miraculously turned to oil.


Although he was widely respected for his gifts and calm manner, SaintNarcissus made several enemies.

He was accused of various sins by sinners in his town. These sins wereso severe that Saint Narcissus started to lose respect in the eyes ofthe people. It didn’t help that the three accusers swore that they weretelling the truth.

A legend has it that one of the accusers asked to be killed in a fire ifhe was lying. Another asked to be struck with leprosy. The last asked tobe immediately blinded if he was found lying.

After all, parties were interviewed, Saint Narcissus was found innocent.Needless to say, the three accusers were struck by their causes.

Due to this slander, Saint Narcissus retired from Jerusalem and wentinto solitude. He spent time alone praying, fasting, and meditating awayfrom civilization.

While Saint Narcissus was away, three bishops assumed his role withoutsuccess. After he returned years later and accepted the pleas of hispeople to become Bishop once again.

Saint Narcissus was however very old and fragile and appointed SaintAlexander to be coadjutor. While he didn’t care for major mattersalone, he continued to work for the people.

Death and Canonization

Saint Narcissus was said to have died around 216 A.D. He was said tohave passed away in Aelia Capitolinia. He was canonizedPre-Congregation.

Saint Narcissus is celebrated by the Roman Catholic Church on the 29thof October and August 7 by the Eastern Orthodox Church.

5 Interesting Facts About Saint Narcissus

  1. Did you know that Saint Narcissus was the 30th Bishop of the See?
  2. Did you know that some historians reckon that Saint Narcissus lived
    up to 160 years?
  3. Did you know that some historians reckon that Saint Narcissus wa
  4. Did you know that while was in seclusion, Saint Narcissus was
    thought to have died?
  5. Did you know that at the Council it was said that Easter should not
    be celebrated with the Jewish Passover?

Prayer to Saint Narcissus

God, You made St. Narcissusan outstanding exemplar of Divine loveand the Faith that conquers the world,and add him to the role of saintly pastors.Grant by his intercession that we may perseverein Faith and love and become sharers of his glory.Amen.