The gentle, compassionate,' Inquisitor
THE 700th anniversary of the death of St. Peter of Verona, first martyr of the Dominican Order-he received the habil from St. Dominic himself shortly before the founder's death-will be celebrated in Spode House Hostel, Hawkesyard Priory, from May 2 to 4.
A Martyr's Triduum will be held n honour of the saint on the theme " Martyrdom and its role in building the Church."
St. Peter of Verona--known also as St. Peter Martyr-was born of a Manichacan family, became a Catholic at the age of seven despite threats from his father, and at 18 entered the University of Bologna.
St. Peter worked as an Inquisitor in Northern Italy for the conversion of heretics. A contemporary report describes him as b%ing " gentle in his humility. sweet in his kindness. compassionate in his piety." He inspired the seven holy men of Florence to found the Servile Order and to this day the Servites have the same habit as the Dominicans but in black throughout. in Easter week 1352, St. Peter and a laybrother companion were struck to death by heretics waiting in ambush.
As St. Peter died he wrote Credo in his blood, and his murderer later became a Dominican laybrother.
'11 he first day of the triduum will be devoted to martyrdom in the early Church. with a film to illustrate it. The second will be devoted to St. Peter Martyr himself. to the Inquisition, and to other martyrs of Catholic Europe. A mime of the life of St. Peter will in the evening be performed by the students of Hawkesyard. On the third day after a votive High Mass of St. Peter there wit be talks on the Church's present exnertence of martyrdom.