Saint Brigid Religious Education
100 Mayflower Street
West Hartford, CT 06110
Feast day: February 14
Methodius was born in 826 in Thessalonica of a senatorial family of
Greek nobility. He Studied at the University of Constantinople, and
taught philosophy there. He soon became a priest. His brother was Saint
Cyril. Cyril was also a priest and was sent to Constantinople to study,
where he also became known as the Philosopher.
Methodius was sent with Cyril by the emperor in 861 to convert the
Jewish Khazars of Russia, a mission that was successful, and which
allowed him to learn the Khazar's language. In 863, he was sent with
Cyril to convert Moravians in their native tongue.
Though some western clergy opposed their efforts and refused to ordain
their candidates for the priesthood, they did good work. They helped
develop an alphabet for the Slavonic language that eventually became
what is known as the Cyrillic today.
After initial criticism for their use of it, they achieved approval of
the Liturgy in the Slavonic language.
Methodius became a Bishop. He Evangelized in Moravia, Bohemia, Pannonia,
and Poland. He Baptized Saint Ludmilla and Duke Boriwoi. He became the
Archbishop of Velehred, Czechoslovakia, but was deposed and imprisoned
in 870 due to the opposition of German clergy with his work. He was
often in trouble over his use of Slavonic in liturgy, some claiming he
preached heresy. He was always cleared of those charges. He translated
the Bible into the Slavonic languages and pioneered the use of local and
vernacular languages in liturgical settings. He died April 6, 885 at