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Saint Bassian

Saint Bassian
  • Century: 4th & 5th Century
  • Patronage: Lodi, Italy
  • Feast Day: January 19th

St. Bassian was an Italian saint that was born in Syracuse, Sicily to Sergius.  Sergius was the Prefect of the city.  St. Bassian was sent to Rome in order to complete his studies.  It was while in Rome, that a clergyman named Jordan Giordano converted him to Christianity. 

St. Bassian’s father wanted him to leave the faith, and return to Syracuse.  He refused and fled to Ravenna instead.  Several years later when the Bishop of Lodi died around 373, he was asked to succeed him.  It was there that he built a church dedicated to the Apostles, consecrating it in 381.  St. Ambrose and St. Felix of Como were present for this consecration. 

We know that St. Bassian participated in the Council of Aquileia in 381, and it is believed that he may have participated in the Council of Milan in 390, in which Jovinian was condemned.  St. Bassian’s signature is found together with St. Ambrose’s in a letter sent to Pope Siricius.  We also know that in 397, St. Bassian was present at his friend St. Ambrose’s funeral.  St. Bassian died on January 19, 409.  In 1185, when Milanese forces destroyed Lodi, his relics were taken to Milan.  They were returned in 1163, when Frederick Barbarosa rebuilt Lodi.  

Practical Take Away

St. Bassian was from Sicily, and his father was the Prefect of that town.  He went to Rome to study, and converted to the faith.  He went on to be ordained and refused his fathers orders to come back to enter the political life.  He eventually became the Bishop of Lodi, and did much to build the Church up.  He was a close friend of St. Ambrose, and also was an acquaintance of St. Felix of Como.