This Day in History: 2022-10-18

Memorial of St. Luke the Evangelist, patron saint of physicians.

St. Luke the Evangelist (1st century AD), the most famous physician among the saints. He was a well-educated Roman citizen who spoke Greek. He is originally from Syria and worked as a physician in Antioch. By converting to the Christian faith, he became involved in the Christian community in Antioch. He was not an eyewitness of Jesus Christ, but he was a faithful follower of St. Paul on his second missionary journey. He wrote the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles. Indirect insights into Luke’s medical abilities come from analyzes of his writing where it is evident that he often uses terminology derived from the Greek medical literature of his time. Numerous medical details can be found in his expressions. In the Gospel, he described about 30 medical situations related to the healing of the soul or body. In addition, Luke’s Gospel is well known for the parable of the Good Samaritan in which he gave an insight into the methodology of caring for those in need, and thus this parable became a guide for Christian medical care. Later he also expressed himself as an extremely talented artist creating icons of the Virgin Mary which he presented to the Mother of God herself. He became the protector of doctors and artists, but especially of doctors. Many medical associations and hospitals bear his name. His memorial is celebrated on October 18th.

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