About St. Cecilia

Patroness of Music - Feast Day November 22

The name of St. Cecilia has always been most illustrious in the church and is mentioned with distinction in the canon of the mass.

St. Cecilia was a native of Rome, of a good family, and educated in the practice of the Christianity. In her youth she took a vow of chastity but was compelled by her parents to marry a noble Roman named Valerian. Cecilia converted Valerian and also his brother Tiburtius to the faith.

Cecilia, Valerian, and Tiburtius were all martyred for their faith.  It is generally believed that this occurred about the year 230 under Alexander Severus, however some place their marryrdom under Marcus Aurelius between 176 and 180.  She was proclaimed a saint by early Christians because of her martyrdom. 

St. Cecilia's body lies in the church of Santa Cecilia in Trastavere in Rome.  The church and a convent were built over the home of St. Cecilia.  The church also contains a moving sculpture by Stefano Maderno of St. Cecilia's incorrupt body as it was found when exhumed in 1599.  Excavations of Cecilia's Roman house can be toured underneath the church.

From her love of music and singing, St. Cecilia has become the patron of music and musicians.  She is often depicted holding a lute, playing the organ, or holding roses.

Where its celebration is not impeded by a universal requirement, a parish patronal feast is a Solemnity within that community. In 2018, the local Solemnity of St. Cecilia is Thursday, November 22nd, Thanksgiving.


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