Sunday 29 November 2015

"I am a man", Saint Cuthbert Mayne (1), English Martyr, Catholic Saint of England

"I am a man."
Saint Cuthbert Mayne (1) - Secular priest
Cuthbert Mayne was the first Martyr among the seminary priests trained at the colleges abroad. He was born near Barnstaple in Devon in 1544 and was brought up by his uncle, a schismatic priest, who had him ordained in the Church of England before he was twenty. At Oxford, Saint Cuthbert came under the influence of Gregory Martin and Edmund Campion; these two kept in touch with him from Douay, he adjured Protestantism, and in 1573 was himself entered at that college.
Saint Edmund Campion receives a blessing from the Pope before he sets out on the English Mission
© 2008 Mary's Dowry Productions
Screenshot from 'Saint Edmund Camion: A hero returns' DVD
After ordination he returned to England (the fifteenth missionary priest sent from Douay), and was stationed at Golden, Francis Tregian's house near Truro. Here he passed as the estate steward, but his priestly ministry lasted only a year. The sheriff of Cornwall, Richard Grenville (of the Revenge), suddenly descended on Tregian's house and searched it; sixteen people were arrested, among them Cuthbert Mayne. When the searchers beat on the door of his room, he had opened it and the sheriff had seized him by the coat exclaiming "What art thou?" And Mayne had replied, "I am a man". But round his neck was found an agnus Dei: it suggested that he was something else as well as a man - a priest.
"In their mouth there was found no lie." - Apoc. 14, 5.
Reading for 29th November
Mementoes of the Martyrs and Confessors of England and Wales
by Henry Sebastian Bowden
For films on DVD about the Missionary priests, Martyrs and Saints of England visit:

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