February 14: Sts. CYRIL AND METHODIUS, Patron Saints of Europe (preceded by Ash Wednesday on 2018)
Dear brethren in Christ, though preceded by Ash Wednesday, tomorrow is also the feast of the Patron Saints of Europe, Sts. Cyril and Methodius, Let us ask God through the intercession of our saints to pray for Europe and its re-Christianization so that its citizens will live to adore and love the One True God.
Sts. Cyril (c. 827–869) and Methodius (c. 815–885) were Byzantine Greek brothers born in Thessaloniki. They were Christian missionaries among the Slavic peoples of the First Bulgarian Empire, Great Moravia, and Pannonia. Through their work they influenced the cultural development of all Slavs, for which they received the title “Apostles to the Slavs.” In 1980, Pope John Paul II declared them co-patron saints of Europe, together with Benedict of Nursia.
O God, who enlightened the Slavic peoples through the brothers Saints Cyril and Methodius, grant that our hearts may grasp the words of your teaching, and perfect us as a people. of one accord in true faith and right confession. Through our Lord.