Martin was released from the army a couple of years after his baptism because of his true dedication to the Faith. The incident that caused this was when the Franks and Allemmani invaded and his regiment was preparing for battle, Martin refused to fight, saying, “Put me in the front of the army, without weapons or armor; but I will not draw sword again. I am become the soldier of Christ.” The commander Julian was ready to do just that with Martin and put him in prison in the meantime, but then the invaders asked for a peace without cause or explanation. Shortly after Martin was then released from prison and the army.
Martin was about 20 years old at this time, and I think young people especially should take note of this scene. Notice his clear vision of who he is and what he believes in as a Christian and his willingness to stand firm in it all the way through. It is impossible to make a stand of any kind if you do not know these things and are not prepared to follow through. No matter what Julian did to him, Martin remained unperturbed because he had the strength of Christ in him. He attained this through living the Christian life day in and day out, uniting himself more and more closely to Christ. It’s time for young people especially to take a look at how they conduct their lives at college and question whether they are “just enjoying the last four good years of their lives before they enter the real world,” or are actively developing themselves into soldiers of Christ who know who they are and what they believe in and are unperturbed by the world when it tries to make them crumble. This is done only if we continually unite ourselves to Christ through His Church, as Martin did.
Martin then went to follow St. Hilary in Poitiers, who fought hard against the Arians who had control over much of the western part of Christendom. A quick word of clarification, the Arian heresy has absolutely nothing to do with the Nazi Aryan race ideology. The Arian heresy held that Jesus had only one nature, man, and was not divine, which contradicted the orthodoxy which had recently been established, which professes that Jesus indeed had two natures, human and divine. The Church today still professes this in the Nicene Creed thanks to the work of holy men like St. Hilary in fighting the Arian heresy, and luckily Martin received guidance from him.
Martin took a trip to visit his parents in his hometown and as he was traveling over the Alps he was stopped by a group of robbers. They wanted all of his property and even threatened to take his life. (Sound like one of our beloved Greg Hand security emails UC students?) Martin calmly talked to them about God instead of simply giving them what they wanted. He was so convincing that he converted one and the others left him unharmed. When I get those Greg Hand emails about robberies and stuff happening around UC, I like to imagine this scene happening if I were being robbed. Here’s what the police report might say:
November 14, 2012
To: UC Community
From: Michael Cureton
Director of Public Safety
Police are investigating an overnight attempted robbery that occurred approximately 10:30pm, Tuesday, November 13. Five males approached the male victim who was walking in the 6000 block of Short Vine. One of the five males produced a handgun and demanded property from the victim. The victim refused to give the suspects anything, and instead talked to them about God. No property was taken and the suspects left the victim unharmed. One of them converted.
This is the end of Part 2. Stay tuned for the last installment!
If you missed Part 1, check it out here.