Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Tears of St. Lawrence (aka The Annual Perseids Meteor Shower)

DID YOU KNOW..."The Tears of St. Lawrence" is another name for the annual Perseids meteor-shower? They are known as such because St. Lawrence was martyred on August 10, 258 A.D.

The History
Due to an edict, issued by Emperor Valerian in early August of that year, commanding throughout the empire that all bishops, priests, and deacons must be immediately put to death, the persecution quickly took place in the city of Rome. Pope Sixtus II was seized in the Catacombs and martyred on August 6 (a date which later became known as the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord). Also on August 6, two deacons met the same fate. Soon enough, four more deacons were soon discovered and also put to death. St. Lawrence was the last and seventh deacon of this time period to suffer martyrdom in Rome.

Best Times to Watch
The annual meter shower is active from July 17-August 24. It usually peaks on August 12 and 13. In 2016, the best observations times will be the pre-dawn hours on the mornings of August 11, 12, and 13.

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