By Christina Hermoso
The Roman Catholic Church remembers today the life and works of San Pantaleon, the patron saint of physicians and midwives.
Every year on his feast day, devotees and pilgrims traditionally gather at his major shrine at the Church of St. Denis in Paris, France, where special prayers and petitions are offered before his sacred relics.
St. Pantaleon is venerated in the West as one of the late medieval 14 Holy Helpers (saints whose intercession were invoked during the plague), while in the East, he is considered as one of the Holy Unmercenary Healers.
Born in the year 275 in Nicomedia near the Black Sea in Asia, he was introduced to Christianity by his mother, Eubula, who was also canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. Blessed with healing powers, St. Pantaleon was also a doctor by profession. He died a martyr of the faith in the year 303 at a time of intense Christian persecution.