Sunday, April 05, 2009

Patron saint of the Internet? Feast Day is April 4th

The internet was founded a few decades ago in efforts which began in the 50s and culminated in the creation of the world wide web. But did you know there is a Catholic saint who is the patron of the Internet.

He is Isidore of Seville. Although you may never have heard of him, he has actually been very important in the Catholic Church. Isidore died in the 7th century and was the bishop of Seville, in Spain. He was canonized in 1598, and was the twelfth person raised to status of Doctor of the Church, which for him was in 1722. He is not the official patron saint of the Internet, but many consider him as such, and perhaps in the future, he will receive this title officially. He is also the patron of computers.

Isidore is famous for writing Etymologiae. In this encyclopedia, he touches on dozens of topics. There are 21 books which range from law, war, agriculture, grammar, animals, and of course, religion. It was compiled near the end of Isidore's life (he died in 636). In his treatise, Isidore takes information from Christian and pagan writers. One interesting note is that in Etymologiae, Isidore asserts that the Earth is in fact round. Apparently it isn't true that people always thought the Earth was flat.

I know this article is a bit late because Isidore's feast is April 4th, and today is April 5th. Today, say a prayer for this saint and Doctor of the Church.

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