Constance vs. Dominic

Only in Lent Madness would you find a monk battling a nun across the centuries. Yet this is exactly what we have today as Constance, a 19th century American nun takes on Dominic, a 12th century Spanish monk.

Yesterday Meister Eckhart squared off against Drogo, and, sadly, it appears that the Patron Saint of Coffee entered the Lent Dome after drinking some Sanka. Eckhart handed Drogo the cup of defeat 55% to 45% and will go on to face the winner of Columba vs. Kateri Tekawitha in the Saintly Sixteen.

It may surprise you, but Lent Madness is not the only way to learn about saints. If you’re interested in online Christian formation opportunities, ChurchNext is a valuable resource, with online video classes on all sorts of topics. Click here for information about a four-part video series hosted by the SEC titled “Praying with the Saints with Scott Gunn and Tim Schenck.” Here’s the official blurb:

In the Christian faith, the lives of exemplary Christians have inspired countless people to live more selfless and charitable lives. While a the word ‘saint’ can apply to any believer, as Scott Gunn and Tim Schenck explain, the term can also be applied to those who have lived particularly faithful lives. In this class, they help us understand more deeply the roles of the saints in history – and in our lives. Their lectures include: 1) What Is a Saint? 2) A History 3) How Can We Be Saints? 4) How to Pray with the Saints.



In 1981 the Anglican Communion moved to recognize a group of Episcopal nuns, the Martyrs of Memphis (or Constance and her Companions) for their heroic efforts in caring for the victims of the yellow fever epidemic of 1878.

Constance and her sisters belonged to the Order of Saint Mary. Along with eight sisters, Constance moved to Memphis, Tennessee, to establish a school. Before the new school could open for the 1873 term, an epidemic of yellow fever hit the town. Over half of the city’s residents fled. Those who remained were poor, sick, and disenfranchised. Five thousand contracted the fever, and 2,000 died. Constance and her companions were the caregivers for sixty of these patients. Because of their amazing care, only eight of their patients died. As the epidemic subsided, the sisters were finally able to open their school in 1874.

Four years later, mosquitoes descended once again on the city. Once again, people fled Memphis. Constance (along with a number of other nuns—both Roman and Anglican—several priests, a handful of doctors, and a prostitute) remained in Memphis to care for the afflicted. Records from the 1878 epidemic indicate this strain of yellow fever infected around 90 percent of the city’s population. So many people died that Memphis lost its charter as a city. It took fourteen years for the population to recover from mass casualties.

Constance and her companions were victims of the epidemic. Constance died on September 8, 1878, and is buried in the historic Elmwood Cemetery. Her last words were, “Alleluia, Hosanna.”

Collect for Constance
We give you thanks and praise, O God of compassion, for the heroic witness of Constance and her companions, who, in a time of plague and pestilence, were steadfast in their care for the sick and the dying, and loved not their own lives, even unto death: Inspire in us a like love and commitment to those in need, following the example of our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

— Anna Fitch Courie



Born in Castile, Spain, in 1170, Dominic entered the priesthood at Osma. In 1206, he accompanied his bishop on a visit to an area held by a group called Albigenses. Dominic and the bishop stayed at an Albigensian inn on the first night of their trip. Dominic didn’t get much sleep. Throughout the night, Dominic conversed with the innkeeper, and when the new day dawned, the innkeeper had been converted.

This conversion was a turning point in Dominic’s life. He felt called to study this sect’s beliefs and engage in public debates comparing Christianity to Albigensian beliefs. He and the bishop made some progress, but in 1207 the bishop died and the Albigensians murdered a papal legate, a personal representative of the pope. This murder prompted the pope to declare a crusade against the Albigenses.

One of the tenets of Dominic’s life was a commitment to living in poverty. He thought an obstacle to the conversion of heretics was the material wealth of some of the clergy. With the approval of the pope, the order founded by Dominic became officially known as the Order of Preachers. They became known informally as the Dominicans or Blackfriars (because of their black habits).

Dominic was offered a bishopric and refused three times, feeling called to his work as a preacher and teacher. He died in 1220 in Bologna, Italy, after returning from one of his many preaching missions.

Collect for Dominic
God of the prophets, you opened the eyes of your servant Dominic to perceive a famine of hearing the word of the Lord, and moved him, and those he drew about him, to satisfy that hunger with sound preaching and fervent devotion: Make your Church, dear Lord, in this and every age, attentive to the hungers of the world, and quick to respond in love to those who are perishing; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

— Beth Lewis

Constance vs. Dominic

  • Constance (77%, 5,658 Votes)
  • Dominic (23%, 1,664 Votes)

Total Voters: 7,322

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Dominic: By Marco Ferrero – Lavoro Personale, CC BY 3.0,

249 Comments to "Constance vs. Dominic"

  1. Oliver--eight years old's Gravatar Oliver--eight years old
    February 17, 2016 - 8:08 am | Permalink

    I voted for Constance because she stayed when people got.

    • Barbara Crafton's Gravatar Barbara Crafton
      February 17, 2016 - 8:25 am | Permalink

      Good for you. OLIVER! I agree.

      • Donna Devlin's Gravatar Donna Devlin
        February 17, 2016 - 9:08 am | Permalink

        Right On!

      • Jennifer S.'s Gravatar Jennifer S.
        February 17, 2016 - 10:44 am | Permalink

        With a niece named Constance who is always looking out for others, how could I not vote for her.

    • Kim Morse's Gravatar Kim Morse
      February 17, 2016 - 8:55 am | Permalink

      She stayed, again and again, and again. No better reason. Thank you as always, Oliver.

    • Mary Lou Creamer's Gravatar Mary Lou Creamer
      February 17, 2016 - 9:00 am | Permalink

      Good for you, Oliver! I voted for het because like Jesus, she sacrificed her life for others. What a great example she is for others

    • tonip1's Gravatar tonip1
      February 17, 2016 - 9:12 am | Permalink

      Couldn’t agree more Oliver! The best reason in the world. Although it would be interesting to know the name of “the prostitute”

      • Amy's Gravatar Amy
        February 17, 2016 - 9:37 am | Permalink

        I believe her name is recorded somewhere at St. Mary’s in Memphis.

        • Carol Arney's Gravatar Carol Arney
          February 17, 2016 - 10:06 am | Permalink

          And her order lives on at St. Mary’s Convent in Sewanee, TN. (Also home of my favorite seminary, the Schoolmof Theology at the University of the South.

          • Sarah Weedon's Gravatar Sarah Weedon
            February 17, 2016 - 2:17 pm | Permalink


        • Dutton Morehouse's Gravatar Dutton Morehouse
          February 17, 2016 - 10:20 am | Permalink

          The altar is dedicated to her, I believe.

          • Bindy Snyder's Gravatar Bindy Snyder
            February 17, 2016 - 12:10 pm | Permalink

            The altar is dedicated
            to Constance and Her Companions: Thecla, Ruth,Frances and Hughetta

      • Katie's Gravatar Katie
        February 17, 2016 - 12:36 pm | Permalink

        I wanted to voite for the prostitute. Oh, well. Constance probably got her to stay.

    • Karen D Powers's Gravatar Karen D Powers
      February 17, 2016 - 9:20 am | Permalink

      I voted for her too, Oliver.

    • Peter Roberts's Gravatar Peter Roberts
      February 17, 2016 - 9:22 am | Permalink

      But she never had a number one record about her!

    • Beth's Gravatar Beth
      February 17, 2016 - 10:32 am | Permalink

      I’m with Oliver. Connie all the way,

    • edward's Gravatar edward
      February 17, 2016 - 11:01 am | Permalink


    • Michelle C's Gravatar Michelle C
      February 17, 2016 - 11:01 am | Permalink

      I agree, Oliver!

    • Lea's Gravatar Lea
      February 17, 2016 - 11:04 am | Permalink

      And if you’ve ever been in Memphis, Tennessee in the summer it is hot and steamy. It would have been an extremely physically difficult place in which to live. Right on, Oliver. She stayed when even rational people would have left.

    • Holly's Gravatar Holly
      February 17, 2016 - 11:52 am | Permalink

      I’m following Oliver’s lead on this. I couldn’t decide between the two, but Oliver’s explanation makes sense.

    • Gail Moulton's Gravatar Gail Moulton
      February 17, 2016 - 12:30 pm | Permalink

      I’m with u

    • Laureli's Gravatar Laureli
      February 17, 2016 - 12:52 pm | Permalink
      here is a good write up of this history by Elizabeth Boggs

      • Rebecca's Gravatar Rebecca
        February 17, 2016 - 8:54 pm | Permalink

        Thanks !

    • Rhonda's Gravatar Rhonda
      February 17, 2016 - 1:00 pm | Permalink

      This one was REALLY hard for me. Dominic had a whole Priestship named after him! That’s pretty awesome.
      But Constance stayed when the ugly stuff happened (bugs, eww) and she took care of people.
      I understand the importance of the spiritual connection, but when that spirit leads you to help PEOPLE, even putting yourself in harms way, well I’d say that’s like a 3 pointer.

      I voted for Constance❤️

    • kesmarn's Gravatar kesmarn
      February 17, 2016 - 1:37 pm | Permalink

      Excellent, Oliver. As a nurse I also had to vote for Constance. Although Dominic seemed pretty cool too. Hope your Lent is going well.

    • Nancy McMahon's Gravatar Nancy McMahon
      February 17, 2016 - 2:12 pm | Permalink

      Me too, Oliver! I would be scared that I would get sick, too. But she was faithful to the people that needed her and to God. Sounds to me from her last words, that she was glimpsing Heaven as she died to Earth.

    • Joyce Rush's Gravatar Joyce Rush
      February 17, 2016 - 4:23 pm | Permalink

      I agree with you, Oliver!!!

    • Pam Payne's Gravatar Pam Payne
      February 17, 2016 - 6:04 pm | Permalink

      You made an excellent point, Oliver. And as a nurse, I had to vote for Constance too!

    • Sarah- 15 years old's Gravatar Sarah- 15 years old
      February 17, 2016 - 8:37 pm | Permalink

      I did to Oliver I loved how she stayed through the sickness and cared for the sick. If I was a sick person I would love to have one of them tend to my care.

    • Laura Smith's Gravatar Laura Smith
      February 17, 2016 - 9:52 pm | Permalink

      Yes, you have to admire people who care for the most difficult to care for. Those who run toward the ones others run from are a true gift from God.

  2. Jen's Gravatar Jen
    February 17, 2016 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    The prayer for Dominic swayed my vote, especially “to satisfy that hunger with sound preaching and fervent devotion.”

    • rev. jon forbes's Gravatar rev. jon forbes
      February 17, 2016 - 9:48 am | Permalink

      I am with you Jen! This should be at the core of all who preach!

      • Sally D's Gravatar Sally D
        February 17, 2016 - 10:52 am | Permalink

        I,too, voted for Dominic. I agree with the idea that the priest must practice what he preaches.

    • Corban's Gravatar Corban
      February 17, 2016 - 9:53 am | Permalink

      Dominic’s collect is really good (one of the best I’ve seen this Lent Madness). But I’ve voted for Constance nonetheless.

  3. Ann Garvin's Gravatar Ann Garvin
    February 17, 2016 - 8:12 am | Permalink

    very difficult choice (big fan of the OP) but I’ll always go with someone providing nursing care — so Constance (and her Companions) get my vote!

  4. ChrisinNY's Gravatar ChrisinNY
    February 17, 2016 - 8:13 am | Permalink

    Go Constance! I will almost always go for the doers- the ones that use their hands and energies for others to manifest God’s love in this world. Have always been a Martha rather than a Mary.

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 17, 2016 - 10:45 am | Permalink

      I voted for Constance as well, but Dominic was also a doer, preaching and teaching.
      Also, he was firmly opposed to the use of violence against heretics. He believed that
      persuasion and love was the way to bring them into the Kingdom.

  5. Joyce in Georgia's Gravatar Joyce in Georgia
    February 17, 2016 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    I’m with you, Oliver. As you said, “She stayed….”

  6. Chris Ladner's Gravatar Chris Ladner
    February 17, 2016 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    I had to vote for the person who stayed when things got bad, knowing it could cost her everything.

  7. Jean's Gravatar Jean
    February 17, 2016 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    Okay, so before reading the description I was SURE I was going to vote for Dominic. I mean, what’s not to like? He founded the order that gave us Thomas Aquinas and the mendicant movement gave rise to Francis and Clare of Assisi. What tipped the scales for me in favor of Constance was the part about the second yellow fever epidemic where it mentioned that the Anglican nuns served alongside Catholics nuns, priests, and a prostitute. That’s the sort of inclusion our Lord showed. So in the end, as much as I admire Dominic, I had to vote for Constance.

    • Lindy's Gravatar Lindy
      February 17, 2016 - 9:15 am | Permalink

      Amen, Jean. I thought the same thing, Dominic for sure! For a time in my life I actually worshipped at St. Mary’s in Memphis and learned about Constance there. I didn’t remember about the second epidemic. And like you I loved the part about the inclusion. It would have been a privilege to serve along side the.

  8. Sharon Kilpatrick's Gravatar Sharon Kilpatrick
    February 17, 2016 - 8:18 am | Permalink

    I wish I knew more about the Albegenses, but I voted for Constance, mostly because the Dominicans did so much harm in the Spanish conquest of South America.

    • February 17, 2016 - 9:07 am | Permalink

      Sharon, I’m with you about South America and the Dominicans. I’m voting for Constance.

    • Matt's Gravatar Matt
      February 17, 2016 - 3:08 pm | Permalink

      Actually, the Franciscans were in the New World several years before the Dominicans arrived, and did much worse. The first Dominicans to arrive were appalled by and spoke out strongly against the subjugation of the Native Americans that they witnessed.

      • February 17, 2016 - 4:05 pm | Permalink

        Correct Matt, and thanks for clearing that up. Obviously I voted for St Dominic, but if St Dominic is going to lose to anyone, I am happy it’s Constance.

    • Anthony Lee's Gravatar Anthony Lee
      February 17, 2016 - 11:10 pm | Permalink

      I gather from Wikipedia that the heresy of the Albigenses was little more than dualism, which doesn’t seem so bad as heresies go, but murdering a papal legate is worse than heresy.
      It’s hard to believe that the followers of St Francis were harder on the Native Americans than the Dominicans were, but nobody’s hands were clean in that mess.

  9. Anne Margo's Gravatar Anne Margo
    February 17, 2016 - 8:18 am | Permalink

    I’ve been inspired by Constance and her companions since I first read the story. How could I not vote for her? But I was humming Dominic’ s song as I voted.

  10. Deacon Marcia's Gravatar Deacon Marcia
    February 17, 2016 - 8:19 am | Permalink

    I’m with Jean. This is a tough choice because Dominic gave so much of great importance to the church. However, Constance and her sisters stayed and loved through a frightful time of sickness. Go, Constance!

  11. Beth's Gravatar Beth
    February 17, 2016 - 8:27 am | Permalink

    All respect to Dominic, but I had to go with my homegirl Constance. She, along with the other Martyr of Memphis, are much revered here.

  12. Marie Cantrell's Gravatar Marie Cantrell
    February 17, 2016 - 8:27 am | Permalink

    Growing up in Memphis and attending the Episcopal school founded by Constance and her sisters, this was an easy one. I am grateful for the grounding in scripture and the formation I gained during my years at St. Mary’s School. As students, we were kept aware of the commitment and sacrifice made by these nuns. A vote for Constance.

  13. Pam's Gravatar Pam
    February 17, 2016 - 8:29 am | Permalink

    I voted for Constance in honor of my best friend who is a nurse.

  14. katie's Gravatar katie
    February 17, 2016 - 8:30 am | Permalink

    Constance hung in there; she knew how to Christian-UP. She walked the walk.

    • Dawn's Gravatar Dawn
      February 17, 2016 - 10:15 am | Permalink

      I’ve never heard the phrase “Chistian-UP” before… love it!!! After all, if cowboys can do it, so can we! A new way of taking on the armor of the Lord. So… Christian-UP everyone! And Constance did just that. Katie – you influenced my vote with that one!

      • Bob Andrews-Bryant's Gravatar Bob Andrews-Bryant
        February 17, 2016 - 1:46 pm | Permalink

        That’s a way to express what Bishop Curry is encouraging: “The New Jesus Movement.”

  15. February 17, 2016 - 8:31 am | Permalink

    Tough choice. I love to preach and have such admiration for nurses and caregivers. I’ve gotta ponder this one today.

    • Janene's Gravatar Janene
      February 17, 2016 - 9:51 am | Permalink

      Agree. Retired from nursing after 44 yrs. voted for Constance who cared for sick and dying without modern infection control measures or drugs. She and her sisters must have been a tough bunch

      • Carie's Gravatar Carie
        February 17, 2016 - 10:59 am | Permalink

        I have been a nurse for 42 years & agree with you. My vote went to Constance that was pure dedication to healing the sick & dying.

  16. Johanne Hills's Gravatar Johanne Hills
    February 17, 2016 - 8:31 am | Permalink

    It is frequently easier to support the tangible over the intangible (Constance and crew) and their record of devotion in healing. However, I went with Dominic, because of the issue of the perceived wealth of the clergy being a stumbling block to belief. He chose real poverty and that witness has sustained many generations of Christians to walk more intentionally with the have nots of this world…perhaps even inspired Constance, centuries later. Who knows?

    • Martha Tecca's Gravatar Martha Tecca
      February 17, 2016 - 9:09 am | Permalink

      This is a very tough call; but I’m with you, Johanne. Walking the walk AND changing the talk.

  17. K. Jeanne Person's Gravatar K. Jeanne Person
    February 17, 2016 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    My ordination stole features an image of Constance. Feminine sacrificial love. My vote!

  18. Mary Beth Smith's Gravatar Mary Beth Smith
    February 17, 2016 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    Aargh! Another wonderfully difficult matchup. Lent Madness 2016 is off to a great start. I really enjoy all of the passionate and thoughtful comments. And 8 and 10 year old participants-wow! I voted for Constance, since I believe that nuns and sisters are the “hands of God”.

  19. John Lewis's Gravatar John Lewis
    February 17, 2016 - 8:38 am | Permalink

    Two saints, both called into the Lord’s service, both heroic in their answers to that call. I don’t know what circumstances surrounded Constance in her childhood and up to her vocation–were they those of wealth and privilege, like Dominic’s? Possibly. But the life that chose her involved constancy in her care for the sick, the dying, the desolate, the outcast. One detail from an account of her life posted by a Tennessee history site: in her final illness she refused to lie on a comfortable mattress because after her death that mattress would have to be burned. There’s an old saying that “Manners maketh man”; it might also be said that manners make a saint.

    • Slugger's Gravatar Slugger
      February 17, 2016 - 2:11 pm | Permalink

      The constancy of Constance says it all.

  20. Deborah DeManno's Gravatar Deborah DeManno
    February 17, 2016 - 8:40 am | Permalink

    While Constance and her fellow martyrs are certainly worthy of the win today, I voted for Dominic in homage to the Dominican Sisters of Adrian (Michigan). In 12 years of elementary and secondary education, those good and faithful members of the Order of Preachers formed me spiritually and intellectually, set me on the path to my career as a scientist, and modeled for me (in the 1960s) the possibility of women being unmarried and still living rich lives of service and scholarship. So it is with deep gratitude that I stand on the side of Dominic and his heirs.

    • sue's Gravatar sue
      February 17, 2016 - 1:34 pm | Permalink

      What a moving testament of the far reaching work of Dominic. Thank you for sharing that and for your service to humanity. I voted for him to as I felt his work made a bigger difference to the world thru time.

  21. Buff's Gravatar Buff
    February 17, 2016 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    Dominic and Constance both preached the gospel. Constance and companions just preached a little better.

    • Bob Andrews-Bryant's Gravatar Bob Andrews-Bryant
      February 17, 2016 - 1:48 pm | Permalink

      One of the quotes from LM 2015: “Always preach the Gospel. If necessary use words.”

  22. Constance's Gravatar Constance
    February 17, 2016 - 8:46 am | Permalink

    This Constance had to vote for the other as well as pray to live to her example.

  23. Jan's Gravatar Jan
    February 17, 2016 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    I wanna hear more about the prostitute….

    • Jenny's Gravatar Jenny
      February 17, 2016 - 9:08 am | Permalink

      Hear hear!

    • Heather's Gravatar Heather
      February 17, 2016 - 9:38 am | Permalink

      Me too! I thought I was the only one wondering what happened to the prostitute!

    • Bindy Snyder's Gravatar Bindy Snyder
      February 17, 2016 - 12:24 pm | Permalink

      Her name was Annie Cook and she turned her brothel into a hospital. Her girls served as nurses.

      • Cricket in the Berkshires's Gravatar Cricket in the Berkshires
        February 17, 2016 - 2:22 pm | Permalink

        That’s a great story!
        Someone call MGM!

      • tonip1's Gravatar tonip1
        February 17, 2016 - 3:40 pm | Permalink

        Bindy, thanks for the info on “the prostitute” . That is such an awesome story.

    • Beth Walton's Gravatar Beth Walton
      February 17, 2016 - 7:32 pm | Permalink

      Me, too! I wanted to vote for Annie Cook! Constance and Dominic are awesome in their own right, and yet Annie Cook and her staff really brought it. Let’s hear it for Saint Annie Cook.

  24. February 17, 2016 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    Terrible challenges and temptations attend the vocation of those with originality, vision, and tremendous energy — those who found movements that catch fire and grow. The hardest thing for the founder of such a movement is to establish structures that will sustain the original vision of that movement. Dominic’s record in that area is not great: the subsequent history of the Dominicans is deeply complicit in the terrible sins of the church during times of conflict, politicization, corruption, militancy, arrogance, and terrible spiritual pride. His vocation to preaching and education, particularly as an alternative to violent suppression of heresy, is crucial; but the forces he unleashed on the church and society wrought horrible destruction as well. How much was due to his own failure to envision how his unique vocation could be corrupted and abused? I don’t know enough history even to guess, and it’s probably unknowable.

    But if I have to pick, I’m going with the sacrificial love of Constance, whom I’d never heard of till this morning.

    • Deborah DeManno's Gravatar Deborah DeManno
      February 17, 2016 - 11:13 am | Permalink

      Gretchen, you are probably referencing the role of Dominicans after Dominic played in the Inquisition among other atrocious history. Could not the same be said for many other religious orders? Whether missionaries who were used to help conquer native people throughout the U.S. or the crimes of Residential schools in the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, the Magdalene laundries in Ireland, etc etc. I think if one points only to the harms done then the list of 100% purely good religious orders will be very short. I guess that’s the problem with humanity being entrusted to be God’s hands and feet in the world – we are more imperfect than perfect.
      And please, let no one misinterpret my advocacy for Dominic today as a knock against Constance.

      • Bob Andrews-Bryant's Gravatar Bob Andrews-Bryant
        February 17, 2016 - 1:52 pm | Permalink

        Yes. The Dominicans were implicit in the Crusades and Spanish Inquisition. But we can’t lay that on Dominic.

  25. Dutton Morehouse's Gravatar Dutton Morehouse
    February 17, 2016 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    Constance and her companions have long been favorites of mine. Actually made a pilgrimage to Memphis and the cemetery. Constance sure has my vote – a good and faithful servant.

    • Carol Arney's Gravatar Carol Arney
      February 17, 2016 - 10:11 am | Permalink

      Better to make a pilgrimage to Memphis to Constance’s grave than to the other revered person of Memphis (Elvis).

      • Dutton Morehouse's Gravatar Dutton Morehouse
        February 17, 2016 - 10:16 am | Permalink

        Actually, we made a pilgrimage to Graceland on the same day.

      • joyce's Gravatar joyce
        February 17, 2016 - 3:39 pm | Permalink

        Don’t be knockin Elvis!!!

  26. Carolyn D. Mack's Gravatar Carolyn D. Mack
    February 17, 2016 - 8:51 am | Permalink

    Evangelism and faith v. caring for the least of these … during Lent … Constance and her companions get my vote.

  27. Maria Jackson's Gravatar Maria Jackson
    February 17, 2016 - 8:51 am | Permalink

    Really hard choice. Episcopal nuns don’t get alot of “press”. The courage of nursing sisters in that time particularly was humbling and a powerful witness.
    I voted for Dominic for the number of souls saved by the creation of the Dominicans.

    • Kathryn's Gravatar Kathryn
      February 17, 2016 - 11:56 am | Permalink

      Constance wasn’t even a nursing sister; they had come to teach and open a school. She never said: “Not my job”.

  28. Susan C.'s Gravatar Susan C.
    February 17, 2016 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    The realization that clerical wealth may impede belief is indeed important. My problem with Dominic is that he was quibbling about doctrine, not substance. The Albigenses were Christian; they simply had a different dogma (which is mostly lost now because of repression), which they defended with the same ferocity that the Popes and “Christian” royalty did. I go with Constance who dispensed with the dogma and lived and died where Jesus led.

    • Bob Andrews-Bryant's Gravatar Bob Andrews-Bryant
      February 17, 2016 - 1:56 pm | Permalink

      I believe it was the Albigensian Crusade that gave us the story of a bishop advising a general to wipe out a city, saying “Kill them all. Let God sort them out.”

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 17, 2016 - 3:56 pm | Permalink

      Susan C.
      I also voted for Constance, but I would like to put in a word for Dominic. You wrote that he was “quibbling about doctrine, not substance.” But doctrine is an integral part of substance. Christianity is not simply good works and religious opinion. It is knowing God. Through doctrine we learn who God is (as much as that is possible) and how God operates (as much as that is possible). The Church has been concerned with doctrine from the very beginning. The Apostolic Council in Jerusalem (Acts 15:1-31) met to settle a doctrinal dispute. Elsewhere in scripture, Paul, Peter, and John address issues of doctrine. Over the centuries, the Church Councils worked to discern what is Truth and what is not. Adhering to the Doctrine of the Church is not going to put us into relationship with God: Opening our hearts to Jesus and giving our lives to him does that. But the teaching of the Church helps us to know the Beloved as much as we can. And that is why doctrine mattered to Dominic.

    • Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
      February 17, 2016 - 5:13 pm | Permalink

      Is there any evidence that Constance “dispensed with the dogma”?

  29. Mary M's Gravatar Mary M
    February 17, 2016 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    This was a tough one for me. In my younger years I attended parochial school and was taught by Dominican nuns. However, as a retired Nurse, I can identify more with the trials of service performed by Constance. She got my vote.

  30. Susan Brooks's Gravatar Susan Brooks
    February 17, 2016 - 8:57 am | Permalink

    I lived in Memphis for three years and never heard about the epidemic…bless Constance and her ‘sisters!’

  31. Jen E. Ochsner's Gravatar Jen E. Ochsner
    February 17, 2016 - 9:01 am | Permalink

    My niece is a nurse who works very hard…….this one is for Constance…….also ponder the meaning of her name……..she remained true to her calling.

  32. Meggan's Gravatar Meggan
    February 17, 2016 - 9:04 am | Permalink

    I love Dominic, but as a former Memphian I must vote for Constance.

  33. Donna Devlin's Gravatar Donna Devlin
    February 17, 2016 - 9:09 am | Permalink

    Constance was constant. You go Girl!

  34. elizabeth pennington's Gravatar elizabeth pennington
    February 17, 2016 - 9:11 am | Permalink

    Dealing over the last 6 years with oncology nurses, my admiration for nurses is limitless and for this icon of steadfastness of whom I knew nothing. Saluting Constance!

  35. Mary W.'s Gravatar Mary W.
    February 17, 2016 - 9:12 am | Permalink

    This is a tough one for me. I don’t think Dominic should be held responsible for the later acts of his followers; I doubt he would have approved. I also think that sitting down and talking with someone with an opposing viewpoint for a long time results in a sounder ‘conversion’ than merely taking over their territory by arms and oppressing them. Finally, I admire the abdication/refusal of wealth, just as I admire that in the current pope. Constance’s contributions are obvious, and I like to hear about Anglican nuns. Well, when I started writing this, I was going to vote for Constance, but now I think I might have talked myself into Dominic. Besides, he seems like such an underdog right now and that makes me want to back him.

    • Peg S.'s Gravatar Peg S.
      February 17, 2016 - 9:47 am | Permalink

      Well said, Mary. I agree Dominic should be appreciated for what he did, rather than condemned for later “followers” who went to places he never intended or envisioned. I voted for Dominic, but I’m glad to have met Constance. It’s yet another win-win day. Either saint would look nice in a Golden Halo.

  36. Sheila's Gravatar Sheila
    February 17, 2016 - 9:12 am | Permalink

    In honor of the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecelia in Nashville, TN who are just simply amazing, I voted for Dominic!

  37. Noreen Ramsden's Gravatar Noreen Ramsden
    February 17, 2016 - 9:13 am | Permalink

    The Dominicans have built so many schools in here in Africa and carried out such wonderful educational work – but the dedication to the poor and suffering shown by Constance gets my vote here in Zululand where medical care is under stress with thousands infected with HIV, often co-infected with TB and compounded by poverty.

  38. Peggy Pate's Gravatar Peggy Pate
    February 17, 2016 - 9:16 am | Permalink

    Constance has my vote. She stayed. Constancy wins the day!
    (I was predisposed to like her because my parents, Raymond and Becky Pate, joked that if they had four daughters they might name them Antica, Partica, Emanca, and Consta!)

    • SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
      February 17, 2016 - 9:54 am | Permalink

      Took me a while to get that, but I got it!!

      • andrea's Gravatar andrea
        February 17, 2016 - 9:47 pm | Permalink


  39. February 17, 2016 - 9:16 am | Permalink

    This was a hard choice. The Dominicans have helped people for centuries and so, by founding the order, Dominic had a huge impact.
    Nonetheless, I voted for Constance. She is a challenging mentor for those of us who are tempted to want to wait for the perfect opportunity to change the world in huge ways. Her life models the witness: You step up to the moment and do what you can to manifest love and hope. The big things will take care of themselves.

  40. Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
    February 17, 2016 - 9:17 am | Permalink

    As someone who attended Kemper Hall in Kenosha, WI run by the Sisters of St. Mary, I had to vote for Constance.

  41. shawn c.'s Gravatar shawn c.
    February 17, 2016 - 9:22 am | Permalink

    Constance put her life on the line for others following Jesus for sure and I liked the part that she was accompanied by many diverse peoples with the same commitment.

  42. LOD's Gravatar LOD
    February 17, 2016 - 9:24 am | Permalink

    Had a son graduate from Providence College. Best school ever! HLaurelave to go with Dominic and the Dominicians. Go Friars!

    • Sonia's Gravatar Sonia
      February 17, 2016 - 2:55 pm | Permalink

      We have a granddaughter there and we had a good friend named Dominic– good reasons to vote for Dominic, or so I thought. I knew of Constance but rereading about her and her sacrificial life and death tipped the scales for me in the end.

  43. Ann E's Gravatar Ann E
    February 17, 2016 - 9:25 am | Permalink

    I voted for Constance for all the reasons already mentioned – her courage and selflessness and endurance. And also because her last words moved me very much. How wonderful to die saying Alleluia!

  44. Lindsey McLennan's Gravatar Lindsey McLennan
    February 17, 2016 - 9:26 am | Permalink

    I live in Memphis and had the privilege of attending a DOK program on the Martyrs at St. Mary’s Cathedral last fall. I was humbled to learn of their persistence in the face of death and willingness to serve God and neighbor. Their story has stuck with me in the months since and reminds me to pray for faith when the world around me looks ugly and doesn’t make sense.

    I don’t normally vote for personal ties (because I usually don’t have one) but today I’m going with Constance because I’ve seen the fruit of her work with my own eyes.

  45. February 17, 2016 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    I voted for Constance because my sister-in-law’s name is Constance and she’s a very dedicated neurologist. I don’t know that she was named after the saint, but I thought that was very cool that they both ended up caring for people in their physical needs.

  46. Carol Buckalew's Gravatar Carol Buckalew
    February 17, 2016 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    I’m a retired nurse. I voted for Constance. I hope in a similar situation I’d have the guts to stay.

  47. Helen Webster's Gravatar Helen Webster
    February 17, 2016 - 9:28 am | Permalink

    Constance gets my vote for remaining faithful. Having faith. Getting the job done. Women in the Church….. YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  48. Joy's Gravatar Joy
    February 17, 2016 - 9:32 am | Permalink

    Constance stayed. Constant presence in fearful times when others flee is a reminder for me – it’s not about me, it’s about we. Constance for me today.

  49. Cindy Jayne's Gravatar Cindy Jayne
    February 17, 2016 - 9:34 am | Permalink

    Dominic was awesome, for sure. But, Constance won my vote, today. Constance, along with a few others, stayed to help heal the sick selflessly. One thing that won me over is that during the second round of sickness, one prostitute stayed to help, as well. Constance probably worked right beside this prostitute to help those who were sick. This is something that Jesus would have done, in the same situation.

    • Anne's Gravatar Anne
      February 17, 2016 - 10:50 am | Permalink

      I was told by Franklin Wright, PhD, who was diocesan historian and expert of the Martyrs, that she and her “ladies” (she was a madam of some note at the time) came to Saint Mary’s offering money and assistance and were told they and their money were not welcome. Rev. Charles Parson’s intervened and welcomed them. I am not sure how she died but she is buried with the Howard Society who purchased her tombstone.

  50. David Shaw's Gravatar David Shaw
    February 17, 2016 - 9:35 am | Permalink

    Constance for sure! Selfless in aiding those truly in need. I have a feeling she will go very far in this competition!

  51. Kathy in Nicaragua's Gravatar Kathy in Nicaragua
    February 17, 2016 - 9:36 am | Permalink

    I also found this a difficult choice — so much in favor of each saint. However, since we’ve already had faithfulness in time of pestilence in the story of Absalom Jones, and since Dominic is the patron saint of Managua (capital of Nicaragua), I voted for Dominic. It appears I also voted for the underdog! (I never look at the results before voting myself.)

  52. February 17, 2016 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    I assumed Dominic was the heavyweight here, and that I would be casting a vote in a losing cause, but now I see that Constance is running away with it. Reading the comments above, I can see why. I was also impressed by her dedication and her working with others outside her personal faith. And also that she died as a direct result of her love for God. It is interesting that this one nameless prostitute got singled out, however. I wonder if she died of yellow fever as well. Alleluia, Constance, Hosanna!

  53. Marianne's Gravatar Marianne
    February 17, 2016 - 9:40 am | Permalink

    I had to vote for Dominic just based on the impact he had on the greater church. Dominic was like Francis, but for some reason is not as sexy to people–not only did he live a life of apostolic poverty, but he realized that priests needed to be better educated to help their message appeal to reason; in turn, they could then educate, and so began the Dominican schools. I just got back from three weeks in the Dominican Republic and was also reminded how much more the Dominicans advocated for the indigenous people there than say, the Franciscans (for example, Bartolomé de las Casas was a Dominican.) Dominic is going to lose, I can see, but he gets my vote because his unique vision changed the church.

    • sue's Gravatar sue
      February 17, 2016 - 1:39 pm | Permalink

      I voted for him too because I thought he was a not just a great role-model but made bigger impact on the world. Thank you for the great points you make to defend him.

      • Brenda J's Gravatar Brenda J
        February 17, 2016 - 3:54 pm | Permalink

        I agree, Sue. Dominic it is for me, while admiring Constance and her little band of selfless people greatly,

  54. Robert Corey's Gravatar Robert Corey
    February 17, 2016 - 9:40 am | Permalink

    After I voted for Constance, having used her life example to help sustain a fast in her honor last fall, I was shocked to see Dominic so lost in her shadow. We’ve a friary and church here of Dominicans. I almost cast my vote in that direction. Francis said “If necessary, use words” — Dominicans sure did.

    Anyhow — I’m hoping at least one example of Constance kitsch has an Elvis connection.

  55. Judy Batson's Gravatar Judy Batson
    February 17, 2016 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    The Anglican nun, Constance, got my vote. I have great respect for nuns in general such as Nuns on the Bus in recent times (Roman) and also the Sisters of the Holy Nativity (Episcopalian) who took me in for my first Christmas alone after my family fell apart. They were so supportive and uplifting! Sisters of St. Anne, in Arlington, Massachusetts, are also wonderful and offer beautiful programs in my own New England area.

    Constance also won my vote since her work involved mosquitoes, and that’s relevant right now with the virus being spread by those insects causing birth defects in pregnant women, Zika, causing birth defects such as microcephaly. Perhaps it’s appropriate to invoke her intercession on behalf of this situation?

    • SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
      February 17, 2016 - 10:01 am | Permalink

      Nice evaluation, Judy!

    • Carole L's Gravatar Carole L
      February 17, 2016 - 12:02 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Judy. I also started thinking of the Zika virus and truly believe that Constance and her companions will be there, in spirit, guiding the health care workers, the parents of the children already born with microcephaly and those sweet children/angels…

    • Dawna's Gravatar Dawna
      February 17, 2016 - 12:39 pm | Permalink

      Going with the Anglican nun for sure. I was an aspirant to the Sisters of the Holy Nativity at one point and they have been a big part of my spiritual formation in general. They are fading so pray for them. Staying makes them living sermons about risking all for love. It speaks louder than any preaching. especially if the preaching is not followed up by action.

  56. Mike Fox's Gravatar Mike Fox
    February 17, 2016 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    I think that this post is unfair to the Albigenses, or Cathari as they are also known. They were just as Christian as the Catholic Church. Some of their beliefs were kind of weird, almost Gnostic, but they were very peaceful for the most part. They did not kill the Pope’s emissary; a knight in service of Raymond VI did. The Cathari were anti-violence, to the extend that many were vegetarians. And how did the Church respond? With a brutal crusade, culminating in a massacre at Beziers where 20,000 people were killed and mutilated. I don’t know if Dominic approved or not, but he was alive when it happened.

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 17, 2016 - 2:49 pm | Permalink

      Dominic did not approve. One of his guiding principles was that love and nonviolence was the way to bring people to Christ.

  57. Betsy's Gravatar Betsy
    February 17, 2016 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    As a woman and a social worker with a specialty in healthcare I had to go with Constance. I had no idea all this happened in Memphis in the 19th century! This was a tough choice, and yet another match up where Constance’s opponent would also be a worthy recipient of the Golden Halo. They both were exemplary examples of the faithful life.

  58. Christine's Gravatar Christine
    February 17, 2016 - 9:46 am | Permalink

    The extermination of the Cathars is not Christianity’s finest hour. Constance- staying for the second epidemic when she knew what the first was like gets my vote.

  59. LI Beth's Gravatar LI Beth
    February 17, 2016 - 9:49 am | Permalink

    My mother was named after two aunts who were both Roman nuns who were sent from Germany to the US and who both died here, one in Tennessee. The choice was clear for me today.

  60. St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
    February 17, 2016 - 9:49 am | Permalink

    Hard choice this morning. I went with Dominic for a reason no one has yet mentioned: he seemed to me a rare example of a theologian (defined broadly) who engaged in “systemic thinking.” That is, he considered the root causes of Albigensian discontent with the dominant church. He recognized that the material wealth of many of the mainstream orders was a direct contradiction of their spiritual claims, and he saw that as a source of corruption. So he was able to imagine the humanity of his “opponents.” I thought that was subtle and admirable. Caring for the sick, while completely worthy, is well within the norm of Christian values and actions. Imagining the humanity and recognizing the justice in the claims of “the other” is not so much practiced or even viewed as acceptable. Today when we face very real challenges to address tensions with our Muslim neighbors (to offer one example), Dominic seems to me to be a germ/kernel of an early effort to view people in their human motivations within a larger ideological context. (He would not have put it in those words, I am sure.) Though he seems sure to go down to defeat today, I think his model is important one for us. Caring for the sick (and I do not begrudge Constance what seems to be her assured victory) is absolutely within the bounds of accepted practice. Seeking to behold the humanity of an enemy is not, though we are exhorted in the gospels to do so. Dominic walked the walk in a way that exposed him to some risk as well (not to disease but to censure). He was not maligned by the church as some innovators were, but he pushed the conceptual bounds of charity. (I probably could have said that in half the words, but I had to think it through as I typed. Y’all can have a cup of coffee in honor of Drogo yesterday!) Dominic has my vote today.

    • awwmuffin's Gravatar awwmuffin
      February 17, 2016 - 10:03 am | Permalink

      Agreed! (Sorry, haven’t had my coffee yet, so that’s as many words as you’ll get out of me right now.)

    • SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
      February 17, 2016 - 10:05 am | Permalink

      I like it when folks think “aloud” on this space! Thanks for your thoughts on Dominic. Good point!

    • sue's Gravatar sue
      February 17, 2016 - 1:43 pm | Permalink

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts. They are soooo true! It’s breaking my heart to see him doing so badly.

  61. Irene's Gravatar Irene
    February 17, 2016 - 9:50 am | Permalink

    As a graduate of St Mary’s, Peekskill, I must vote for Constance. Although the Community of St Mary no longer includes nursing, the dedication to serving was still passed on to those of us who were educated by those nuns.

  62. Kit Decker's Gravatar Kit Decker
    February 17, 2016 - 9:51 am | Permalink

    Living in Memphis, I’m voting for our hometown Saint. She was ever constant and an inspiration to many by her selfless love and devotion to others.

  63. Debbie Kair's Gravatar Debbie Kair
    February 17, 2016 - 9:52 am | Permalink

    I love that Dominic recognized wealth as an obstacle to preaching the life & words of Jesus (which have a lot to say about the value of a simple lifestyle). I had to go with Constance. Inspired me that she served in an epidemic not once but twice! Then, as many other women leaders, moved on to more good works- education. Those are the top 2 on my list – health care & education.

  64. Barbara Tope's Gravatar Barbara Tope
    February 17, 2016 - 9:53 am | Permalink

    Something is wrong! I’ve participated in Lent Madness for 3 or 4 years, and love it. In the past, whomever I vote for always loses. This year I’m batting 1,000 so far. Today, I can’t decide. I may have to flip a coin. Or should I go with Constance just to stay a winner?

  65. Scott Elliott's Gravatar Scott Elliott
    February 17, 2016 - 9:54 am | Permalink

    I went for Dominic for much the same reasons others went for Constance, and which I would have, had I done so. Her sacrificial love was no less extreme than his, and in fact, because the ardors of his life were longer-lived, his were, in that way, worse.

    And he founded an order from which the church and the world has incalculably benefitted, an exponentially greater number of people. Plus, sound theology, well-expressed, is as essential to a healthy community as good pastoral care, as the church everywhere is discovering.

  66. February 17, 2016 - 9:55 am | Permalink

    We voted for Dominic because he perceived a famine of hearing the word of the Lord (something we are very familiar with, sadly, in our day) and devoted his life to preaching and teaching, while giving up material comforts himself. Worldly riches are indeed a stumbling block to so many of us. Constance also led an exemplary life, very inspiring – tough decision today, indeed! Thanks, SEC, and friends, for this fabulous journey during Lent!

  67. Stewart's Gravatar Stewart
    February 17, 2016 - 9:57 am | Permalink

    Engaging with someone who thinks differently than you – our current political discourse could benefit from Dominic’s example but Constance commitment to the poor and dying in right here in the US deserves to be better known plus my mother’s name was Constance. This one’s for you Mom. I vote for Constance.

  68. Deb's Gravatar Deb
    February 17, 2016 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    For “Constance-ly” remaining with the sick and poor and caring for their needs even to their own peril, Constance and her little gang (including the prostitute) have captured my vote…and probably God’s


  69. JP's Gravatar JP
    February 17, 2016 - 10:00 am | Permalink

    Constance won out for me. In this time in the world we need more people who give their lives to care for those suffering from diseases that are seemingly incurable. What an example for all of us.

  70. February 17, 2016 - 10:01 am | Permalink

    I felt called to vote for the more contemporary Saint because of her proximity to our time. And because we need to raise awareness of American examples of sacrifice. However, I’m even happier with my vote after reading her story. Courage, strength, and undaunted commitment; what a powerful witness!

  71. Joanne's Gravatar Joanne
    February 17, 2016 - 10:07 am | Permalink

    Striking contrast in the “mug” shots caught me right away. Dominic’s face would be so much more appealing to look at as I sip my morning coffee so I had to go with him.

  72. Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
    February 17, 2016 - 10:11 am | Permalink

    Difficult choice for me, as for so many others. Ultimately I voted for Dominic in appreciation for the rosary. In any event, because of the recentism which is LM’s fundamental weakness, I’m not worried about spoiling Sr Constance’s victory!

  73. Ryan Whitley's Gravatar Ryan Whitley
    February 17, 2016 - 10:12 am | Permalink

    As the Ward Superior (he said lightly) of the Blessed Constance and Her Comapnions ward of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, I’m sticking with Constance today, although Dominic is equally as worthy.

  74. Anne's Gravatar Anne
    February 17, 2016 - 10:16 am | Permalink

    My great-grandfather, Rev. Charles Carroll Parsons, is 1 of Constance’s Companions (Martyrs of Memphis). He was 1 of 2 priests who chose to stay in Memphis to assist the victims of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1878 and with Constance died of the disease.

    • MJK's Gravatar MJK
      February 17, 2016 - 8:48 pm | Permalink

      wow, a descendent. That is very cool. Thanks for sharing

  75. Lisa Rose's Gravatar Lisa Rose
    February 17, 2016 - 10:20 am | Permalink

    Constance didn’t just stay. She returned! She was safely far away in New York when the 1878 epidemic broke out. She and Sister Thecla returned to Memphis while everyone else was fleeing it. I wish this vote could be for all the Martyrs of Memphis, as there were many. But I will settle for casting my vote for Constance… who died on the floor so as not to spoil a mattress.

    • SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
      February 17, 2016 - 12:02 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Lisa Rose. I wondered where they came FROM when I read that they came TO Memphis!

  76. Karen Pearson's Gravatar Karen Pearson
    February 17, 2016 - 10:24 am | Permalink

    But, I don’t remember Dominic objecting all that strenuously when Albigensians who would not “convert” were slaughtered.

  77. Randall's Gravatar Randall
    February 17, 2016 - 10:25 am | Permalink

    A vote for Constance and the Sisters’ , and next year I propose that you name the prostitute that helped in the epidemic, and make her a contender in Lent Madness 2017.

    • Anne's Gravatar Anne
      February 17, 2016 - 10:32 am | Permalink

      Have visited her grave and I say “go for it!”

      • andrea's Gravatar andrea
        February 17, 2016 - 9:44 pm | Permalink

        I agree. Go Saint Annie Cook of Memphis!

  78. SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
    February 17, 2016 - 10:25 am | Permalink

    Wow, tough choice! Both dedicated their lives to the church. Both were educators sent by their bishops to minister in a new place. Both wore black habits. Dominicans also served the poor and sick, like Constance. But they also were responsible for working the Inquisition later on. Well, well. In honor of my departed mother-in-law, Connie, I’m voting for Constance.

  79. Igor Kalinski OPI's Gravatar Igor Kalinski OPI
    February 17, 2016 - 10:27 am | Permalink

    i vote for Saint Dominic, he have done great things for the Church

  80. Art's Gravatar Art
    February 17, 2016 - 10:31 am | Permalink

    Dominic’s biography only scratches the surface of what he did and how he impacted Christianity. He needs to get more credit than he did.

  81. Tessa's Gravatar Tessa
    February 17, 2016 - 10:31 am | Permalink

    Another tough choice — which is a compliment to the SEC. So many worthy saints!

    I wondered about the companions of Constance and why we seldom or never hear their names. St. Mary’s in Memphis lists them as:
    Sister Constance (neé Caroline Louise Darling, b. Medway, Mass., 1846), superior of the work at Memphis, headmistress of St. Mary’s School for Girls.
    Sister Thecla, sacristan of St. Mary’s Cathedral and its school chapel, instructor in music and grammar (English and Latin)
    Sister Ruth, nurse at Trinity Infirmary, New York
    Sister Frances, a newly professed nun given charge of the Church Home orphanage
    The Rev. Charles Carroll Parsons, rector of Grace Episcopal Church, Memphis; former U.S. Army artillery commander, West Point alumnus and professor (Served with classmate Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer in Kansas, defense counsel in Custer’s 1867 court-martial trial.)
    The Rev. Louis S. Schuyler, newly ordained assistant rector at Parsons’ prior parish, Holy Innocents Episcopal Church, Hoboken, New Jersey.

    Sorry, ladies and gentlemen, nothing further on the site about the proprietress of the bordello who also tended to the sick.

  82. Anne E.B.'s Gravatar Anne E.B.
    February 17, 2016 - 10:43 am | Permalink

    Sister Constance for the Golden Halo! Such an easy choice for this native Memphian. Constance and her companions, the Martyrs of Memphis, are quite revered here. We remember them in prayers every Sunday at St. John’s Episcopal Church. I lost family members in both yellow fever epidemics. Vote for the hometown girl. Go Connie!

  83. February 17, 2016 - 10:43 am | Permalink

    Yet another site for learning about the saints is “Holy Women, Holy Men: Celebrating the Saints” at or on Facebook at or on Twitter at

  84. Paula's Gravatar Paula
    February 17, 2016 - 10:48 am | Permalink

    As a former Memphian, I’ve always admired Constance and her companions for their selfless compassion. Thanks so much for including her here.

  85. Anna's Gravatar Anna
    February 17, 2016 - 10:49 am | Permalink

    Our daughter went to a Dominican school. I have so much respect and affection for the sisters there that I knew this was a slam dunk…until I read about the one who stayed, and cared. Constance for me today.

  86. Verdery's Gravatar Verdery
    February 17, 2016 - 10:56 am | Permalink

    I admire Constance immensely and am glad to have learned about her. And her great lead in the voting made the decision to vote for Dominic easier–he’s the underdog (oops, that was a sort of unintended pun).
    Dominic got my vote because of some terrific Dominicans who do campus mission work out of the Episcopal church I attend. They and our priests have gotten along so well that the two communities have the occasional service together, showing the world that Christians _can_ get along.

  87. Jody Gebhardt's Gravatar Jody Gebhardt
    February 17, 2016 - 10:57 am | Permalink

    Constance it is, though Dominic’ collect was persuasive. Like Constance, my mom nursed the sick, and had she not married, would have been right there with the Constances of today. Especially poignant today as she passed away four years ago today, beloved and admired by everyone who knew her.

  88. February 17, 2016 - 11:01 am | Permalink

    Not only once did she stay for the sick and dieing but twice. She gave her life for the sick and dieing.

  89. Sally Clark's Gravatar Sally Clark
    February 17, 2016 - 11:02 am | Permalink

    The prostitute’s name was Annie Cook. She ran a bordello.

    • SusanLee's Gravatar SusanLee
      February 17, 2016 - 12:06 pm | Permalink

      Thank you!!!

    • Elizabeth Byrd's Gravatar Elizabeth Byrd
      February 17, 2016 - 12:34 pm | Permalink

      Thanks again.

  90. edward's Gravatar edward
    February 17, 2016 - 11:02 am | Permalink

    i voted for constance because she stayed when people got sick

  91. Ellen's Gravatar Ellen
    February 17, 2016 - 11:06 am | Permalink

    Went with the monastic but Constance is also in my heart. Tough one today.

  92. Lauren's Gravatar Lauren
    February 17, 2016 - 11:13 am | Permalink

    I pre-researched the wrong Constance! I thought it was Constantina, daughter of Constantine, who was apparently pretty terrible, so I had planned to vote for Dominic. The information today completely changed my tune, since I used to live in Memphis. Go Constance!

  93. February 17, 2016 - 11:14 am | Permalink

    Very tough round again, SEC. But as much as I admire Dominic, I went with Constance, whom I didn’t know about until now. That’s the genius of Lent Madness – bringing to our attention the wondrous holy women and men who came before.

  94. Nancy R's Gravatar Nancy R
    February 17, 2016 - 11:19 am | Permalink

    Constance reminds me of all those who stayed to nurse Ebola patients last year, risking ostracism and death.

  95. TLH's Gravatar TLH
    February 17, 2016 - 11:20 am | Permalink

    Constance put her money where her mouth is. She got my vote. 😉

  96. JustMeJo's Gravatar JustMeJo
    February 17, 2016 - 11:20 am | Permalink

    Oliver, you may be a young man of few words, but what words they are! “She stayed”. To me that says it all! Constance it is! (And I am tearing up…)

  97. Marilyn D's Gravatar Marilyn D
    February 17, 2016 - 11:21 am | Permalink

    I agree with Rev. Sylvia. I felt compelled to vote for a contemporary (more or less) American Anglican nun. I am facinated by her story and legacy.

  98. Adelaide Kent's Gravatar Adelaide Kent
    February 17, 2016 - 11:23 am | Permalink

    Oliver is right. We needs more Constances in the world.

  99. s's Gravatar s
    February 17, 2016 - 11:23 am | Permalink

    this was a slam dunk

  100. Diane's Gravatar Diane
    February 17, 2016 - 11:25 am | Permalink

    The bio on Constance is so timely- and a reminder of the contributions of contemporary saints who are currently addressing the plight of those affected by Zika, Ebola, and more.

  101. aleathia (dolores) nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores) nicholson
    February 17, 2016 - 11:32 am | Permalink

    There may indeed be theological reasons for selecting Dominic but caring for the sick who are not only liable to die but most assuredly are going to take you along with them for that final ride is the act that will ensure victory for Constance and the Sisters. I would hope and pray to be blessed with that selfless kind of courage and that’s the best I can say. Two epidemics? Some call it pressing your luck; we know it as trusting the grace of God. I also count the prostitute as one of Constance’s companions…she did.

  102. John Ira Clemens Jr's Gravatar John Ira Clemens Jr
    February 17, 2016 - 11:37 am | Permalink

    I’ve always enjoyed Lent Madness. Only here could I sit in the privileged position of choosing between the “better” of two saints when I don’t deserve to be the footstool for any of them. But there’s always a bunch I’ve never heard of too!

    • Pam Payne's Gravatar Pam Payne
      February 17, 2016 - 6:24 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, John. It is certainly humbling to see the efforts others have made on behalf of their faith. What examples they are!

  103. Wynne Osborne's Gravatar Wynne Osborne
    February 17, 2016 - 11:39 am | Permalink

    Nurses first!

  104. Candy's Gravatar Candy
    February 17, 2016 - 11:47 am | Permalink

    Go Constance! Good job Anna Fitch Courie!!

  105. Bonnee's Gravatar Bonnee
    February 17, 2016 - 11:47 am | Permalink

    Voted for Constance despite my 8/8 birthdate and having seen Dominic’s impressive sarcophagus in Bologna.

  106. Mollie Douglas Turner's Gravatar Mollie Douglas Turner
    February 17, 2016 - 11:47 am | Permalink

    No trouble deciding for Constance–what a story!–especially because I do love Sewanee and St. Mary’s convent there; her portrait hangs in the vestibule. But Dominic had his pull, too: I was a member of the Blackfriars drama club (the oldest theatre group in Atlanta, I’m told) at Agnes Scott College back in the day, and a big fan of Soeur Sourire’s #1 hit back in the 60’s. Does anybody know of a postable link to “Dominique?” We should have it up today, as apparently we won’t get a chance for any Dominican kitsch!

  107. Laureli's Gravatar Laureli
    February 17, 2016 - 11:48 am | Permalink

    I do appreciate the works of the Sisters while in Memphis but I chose Dominic this time. His convictions for educating people about Christ is what bring about the works needed for caring of the sick like the good Sisters did. Dominic didn’t just preach and convert folks but was a very austere person leading by example.

  108. Mary Phinney's Gravatar Mary Phinney
    February 17, 2016 - 11:49 am | Permalink

    Deeds over words. Constance.

  109. Christy's Gravatar Christy
    February 17, 2016 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    Once again the thoughtful arguments for each of the candidates, persuaded me to join the Constance camp

  110. Fiona's Gravatar Fiona
    February 17, 2016 - 11:54 am | Permalink

    In an age when we need thoughtful dialogue more than ever, coupled with a commitment to preaching and sensitivity in sharing the gospel, lead me to vote for Dominic, which is not to say that I do not have huge respect for Constance and all her companions. Dominic was committed to poverty and turned down a bishopric three times, which, along with the words of the collect were enough for me today.

  111. Mary Ferry's Gravatar Mary Ferry
    February 17, 2016 - 11:54 am | Permalink

    As a graduate of St. Mary’s School in Peekskill NY, I have to go with our southern cousin Constance.

    • Elizabeth Byrd's Gravatar Elizabeth Byrd
      February 17, 2016 - 12:35 pm | Permalink

      Hi, Mary.

  112. Robert E. Garrett, M.D.'s Gravatar Robert E. Garrett, M.D.
    February 17, 2016 - 12:04 pm | Permalink

    I voted for Constance, although I usually prefer the Medieval saints. Both as a Christian and as a Physician, I especially honor those who placed their own lives at risk to help others, those suffering from a deadly and untreatable disease. To me, this is the highest fulfillment of both the Hippocratic Oath and Our Lord’s commandment to love our neighbors.

  113. Jules's Gravatar Jules
    February 17, 2016 - 12:27 pm | Permalink

    I voted for Constance because Dominic’s movement eventually birthed the dreadful error of the Inquisition. I know, I know – not Dominic’s fault. But the heroic ministry of Constance and her companions far outweighs Dominic’s authentic contributions to the Faith

  114. Dan's Gravatar Dan
    February 17, 2016 - 12:29 pm | Permalink

    I voted for Dominic. Constance is a true exemplar of faith in action. Faith, however, comes by hearing. Proclamation of the gospel leads to changed lives. Good deeds then follow. Constance acted on the faith she heard proclaimed. Dominic encouraged all people to proclaim the good news of God in Christ in both word and deed.

  115. Kathy M's Gravatar Kathy M
    February 17, 2016 - 12:30 pm | Permalink

    As a nurse and an associate of the Community of St Mary, Eastern Province, This was an easy decision. Constance( and her companions) all the way!!

  116. Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
    February 17, 2016 - 12:42 pm | Permalink

    All martyrs are special, but Constance was a martyr to her own compassion. No sadistic pagans, no diabolical devices, no ravening lions, just the purifying fire of faith. I hadn’t known the story of Constance and her companions and am in awe.

    Nothing against Dominic — far from it — but I have only one vote.

  117. Brixham Beth's Gravatar Brixham Beth
    February 17, 2016 - 12:52 pm | Permalink

    I think that Dominic should be Patron Saint of Food Banks as he sold all his disposable assets (including his annotated parchment copy of the Bible) so that he could aid his starving neighbours, apparently he said ‘I will not study on dead skins when living skins are dying of hunger’. He was also brilliant at organisation and as well as the preaching Friars he established groups of women to educate the girls in the community.
    Constance sounds like a very special person but I went with Dominic today.

  118. Marylyn Vincent's Gravatar Marylyn Vincent
    February 17, 2016 - 12:54 pm | Permalink

    I am beginning to wonder whether there are more women voters than men?

  119. Linda McGee's Gravatar Linda McGee
    February 17, 2016 - 1:04 pm | Permalink

    I’ve read about Constance & her companions in “Holy Women, Holy Men”. I admire her & hope that I can emulate her if I am ever in a similar circumstance. Go Constance!

  120. Kris Hatch's Gravatar Kris Hatch
    February 17, 2016 - 1:05 pm | Permalink

    The Order of St. Mary’s continues it’s work and I celebrate that with thanksgiving….. and my ONE vote!

  121. Linda from St. Ed's's Gravatar Linda from St. Ed's
    February 17, 2016 - 1:14 pm | Permalink

    Interesting links between this pair of saints and some who have entered the “Lent Dome” previously. Here we have Dominic, the founder of the order that Meister Eckhart would later join, and Constance, who faithfully nursed yellow fever victims like Absalom Jones had before her. As I was reading the write-up for Constance, I felt certain I’d vote for her, especially in light of the current yellow fever epidemic in Angola (the country where I live and work). However, I went with Dominic in the end, for his dedication to spreading God’s Word and his gentle witness to the Albigenses.

  122. Mary Ann G.'s Gravatar Mary Ann G.
    February 17, 2016 - 1:15 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for an easy one Today. Definitely Constance who put her health and safety above everything else.

  123. Diane's Gravatar Diane
    February 17, 2016 - 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Constance, because her story brought me to tears when I reached the end. To stay through two epidemics when other fled is such a beautiful sacrifice.

  124. Susan Steigerwald's Gravatar Susan Steigerwald
    February 17, 2016 - 1:27 pm | Permalink

    I seem to like the underdogs most days. Hmm.

  125. AnchorageABC's Gravatar AnchorageABC
    February 17, 2016 - 1:35 pm | Permalink

    For me this was a tough vote. Both served their fellow human beings well.

    I do admire Constance’s compassion for the sick a little than Dom’s vow of poverty

  126. Elaine's Gravatar Elaine
    February 17, 2016 - 1:38 pm | Permalink

    C’mon people. The founder of the Order of Preachers, by a country mile.

  127. TJ's Gravatar TJ
    February 17, 2016 - 1:51 pm | Permalink

    Constance, for staying to help a city that eventually produced one of my dear friends when others ran away to save themselves. It’s the kind of selfless love and compassion I want to grow to emulate.

  128. Elaine Culver's Gravatar Elaine Culver
    February 17, 2016 - 2:01 pm | Permalink

    All honor to Constance and her heroic companions in Memphis during the two epidemics. They all deserve golden halos with precious stones in the Hereafter. My vote, however, goes to Dominic. I learned early on how much good sound theology can do and how much harm bad theology can do. Transfiguration is a teaching parish, and two of the best preachers and teachers I’ve ever know were born to do do both.

  129. Denise's Gravatar Denise
    February 17, 2016 - 2:31 pm | Permalink

    I was all ready to vote for the Spanish Monk, because my daughter is visiting Spain this summer to walk the Camino…. but Constance won me over. I adore that photo of her. The fact that she set out to educate children and instead nursed victims of the epidemic, and putting her own life at risk – what an inspiration!

  130. Phil Kober's Gravatar Phil Kober
    February 17, 2016 - 2:34 pm | Permalink

    As a physician (retired), I had to vote for Constance who acted in the finest traditions of health care, risking her own life to treat others that they might live! Philip M. Kober, JD, MD, PhD

  131. Eileen C. Fisher's Gravatar Eileen C. Fisher
    February 17, 2016 - 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Another round in which the choice was easy to make. As a physician, I would be hard put to explain why I didn’t vote for such a committed health care provider who put herself in harm’s way. She calls to mind the health care providers and others who sacrified their lives during the Ebola epidemic. I don’t know if I personally would find the strength to put my life at risk during an epidemic caused by such a dangerous infectious agent. Constance serves as an excellent role model for us all. I hope she gets the Golden Halo!

  132. Elizabeth siler's Gravatar Elizabeth siler
    February 17, 2016 - 3:18 pm | Permalink

    Constance for me! She gave her life willingly. She and her sisters saved so many people. I hope some day to visit Memphis and see where they worked with the sick.

  133. Ione's Gravatar Ione
    February 17, 2016 - 3:49 pm | Permalink

    A hard choice. A nun who gave her life in service and care of others vs a priest who founded an order.
    After some pondering it was Constance.

  134. Linda's Gravatar Linda
    February 17, 2016 - 3:54 pm | Permalink

    Oliver, you got it! Me 2

  135. John G.'s Gravatar John G.
    February 17, 2016 - 4:25 pm | Permalink

    I am from Memphis and grew up attending St. Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral where Constance and her companions served and has the alter dedicated to them. There are stainglass windows behind the alter depicting her that you need to drop by and see if you are in town. So, I had to go with the hometown hero. While I know they have limited space in Madness, I have read an incredible amount about them and the service to others Constance and her companions performed is amazing. Having said all that, I have to admit that Dominic is worthy of the Golden Halo on any year — he just didn’t live my hometown. But, the Domicans to this day continue to serve the Memphis community out of St. Peter Catholic Church with 175 yearss of service in Memphis — something that would never have happened but for Dominic.

  136. Carmen Fairley's Gravatar Carmen Fairley
    February 17, 2016 - 4:32 pm | Permalink

    I was moved to tears by Constance’s devotion to the sick and dying, and hoped I wouldn’t like Dominic better because I recognized her as vote-worthy! When I started reading Dominic’s bio, I got all excited when I read he’d been born in Spain; however, I thought I’d better check to see if he actually was actually Santo Domingo de la Calzada of Camino de Santiago bridge and road-building fame. He wasn’t – different years, different town, different saint altogether, and different reason for historical notoriety, so Constance got my vote.

  137. Dutton Morehous's Gravatar Dutton Morehous
    February 17, 2016 - 4:40 pm | Permalink

    Glad to see Constance is so well recognized.

  138. JayWard's Gravatar JayWard
    February 17, 2016 - 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Dom gets credit for PC hoops. Kind of. But we experienced dengue in our family and Constance wins the vote based on a firmly anti-mosquito platform. And Oliver. Of course.

  139. Leo's Gravatar Leo
    February 17, 2016 - 5:07 pm | Permalink

    I have to vote for Dominic out of respect for the education I received from the “Blackfriars” during my HS Years (long long ago). Love “Courageous Constance” and her fearless commitment and she is way ahead in the voting but my heart says Dom!

  140. DonnaK's Gravatar DonnaK
    February 17, 2016 - 5:08 pm | Permalink

    My great-aunt was an Anglican nun (order of St. Margaret), so I will have to go with her sister sister.

    • Georgia's Gravatar Georgia
      February 17, 2016 - 5:47 pm | Permalink

      I voted for Dominic because he lived the Great Commission — going into the world and preaching. He also lived a life of poverty to separate himself from the mainstream, rich church.

  141. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Lucy Porter
    February 17, 2016 - 5:27 pm | Permalink

    After knowing some Dominicans during my chaplaincy days, I am so grateful to and for the founder of the order. This was a hard choice, though, considering my respect and admiration for Constance.

  142. Constance Santana's Gravatar Constance Santana
    February 17, 2016 - 6:09 pm | Permalink

    I grew up in a Catholic “orphanage” in Mobile, Alabama (St. Mary’s), that had been established for the care of children orphaned during the Yellow Fever epidemic(s) there. I learned my patron saint was a first century martyr of noble birth or a fourth century daughter of one of the Constantine’s, referred to as a violent Fury, more blood thirsty than her husband (yikes!). I was so disappointed! Amazing that there was another Constance right up there in Tennessee and I only heard of her today. Of course those were the days when a good Roman Catholic child would not have known about any Episcopal “saints”. Thank you so much for enlightening me! My first thought on seeing Constance vs Dominic was that Constance didn’t have a prayer. Go Constance!!

  143. Heather D. Sanderson's Gravatar Heather D. Sanderson
    February 17, 2016 - 6:42 pm | Permalink

    Constance. One of my early memories in life was a visit to a cemetery in Mobile, AL, the city of my birth, where yellow fever victims are buried. That Romans, Anglicans and a prostitute could work side by side, bravely nursing the yellow fever victims, reminds me that we are all sinners, it’s just a matter of degree. The good heart, and its intentions, is the most important thing, when it comes down to the brass tacks. How many so called pious people fled Memphis, fear for their own comfort and lives? Constance gets my vote for her good heart, selflessness and bravery.

  144. Susan Mulledy-DeFrank's Gravatar Susan Mulledy-DeFrank
    February 17, 2016 - 6:52 pm | Permalink

    I had to vote for Constance as she most probably was one of the people who saved many my ancestors, who had lived in the Memphis area at that time.

  145. Colleen Rose's Gravatar Colleen Rose
    February 17, 2016 - 6:55 pm | Permalink

    I had to vote for St. Constance. Our Daughters of the King Chapter is named for St. Constance because of her devotion to the suffering people of Memphis.

  146. Nathan 8yrs and Colin 5yrs's Gravatar Nathan 8yrs and Colin 5yrs
    February 17, 2016 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

    (Nathan 8yrs) I voted for Constance because she helped many people and was very selfless.
    (Colin 5yrs) I like Constance because she was like Supergirl saving that many people!

    • Sonia's Gravatar Sonia
      February 18, 2016 - 7:00 am | Permalink

      Wonderful to hear more young voices getting into this lenten ‘game.’ Keep it up, Nathan and Colin

  147. james lodwick's Gravatar james lodwick
    February 17, 2016 - 7:32 pm | Permalink

    The SEC gave us another impossible choice today. I voted for Constance because of her stirring and fearless faithfulness in caring for the sick and dying even at the price of her own death. I must say I was a bit disappointed with today’s bios of both Constance and Dominic. Neither bio communicated a sense of the passion and deep devotion with which these two saints lived out their lives. Even a very brief biography should give us that sense, as indeed some of the earlier notices have. Perhaps there could have been a quote from Constance’s moving notes which she kept during the epidemic and some acknowledgment of the enormous influence of Dominic on the history and thinking of the church from his time until our own day through the religious order he founded, including by such of its members as Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas and Catherine of Siena, all saints in their own right.

  148. Nyc's Gravatar Nyc
    February 17, 2016 - 7:56 pm | Permalink

    I voted for Constance. Love in action is always a win for me. As an aside, I would love to know more about the prostitute

  149. February 17, 2016 - 7:59 pm | Permalink

    Actually – Constance and her sisters were out of town at the Hudson River, when the epidemic broke out and RUSHED back to Memphis to serve others. She died about 20 days after she arrived to help others. It sounds like such a chaotic and tragic time. She and Dominic were both great people. Tough choice, but I am going to give Dominic a vote!

  150. Christine's Gravatar Christine
    February 17, 2016 - 8:00 pm | Permalink

    My grandmother was a nursing nun in the Order of St Anne until she nursed my grandfather back to health and then married him. After she left the order, she nursed neighbors in her small town. So, Constance!

    Furthermore, Dominic has a lot to answer for. I lived in Southern France for six years and heard how much people there despised the Northern French for the Albigensian Crusade- probably 100,000 dead, which resulted in successful extermination of not only the believers, but the belief. There are no more Cathars. They all died. They called themselves Les Bons Chretiens, good Christians, and their beliefs were just a local form of Christianity that had evolved in Southern France from early times. Irenaeus, bishop of Lyon, wrote On Heresy about his neighbors’ beliefs. The Cathars were pacifists and vegetarians who believed in reincarnation. Their belief system was certainly Gnostic. They thought Satan ruled on earth, but we all have a divine spark that will be released after enough cycles of virtuous living. Even virtuous animals are part of the cycle. They had no professional clergy, but had itinerant clerics, both men and women, who went from place to place in pairs. They believed in tolerating all beliefs. The Cathars were highly respected by their Catholic/orthodox neighbors, who refused to denounce them to the Northern crusaders- hence the order, “Kill them all, God will recognize His own.” The French historian Le Roy Ladurie has written about them. There’s also a good popular history: Pilgrims, Heretics and Lovers. The Albigensian Crusade was a tragic case of the bad guys winning in the end. I wonder how history would have changed had they not exterminated this gentle version of Christian belief. The Domine Cane- Dominicans, hounds of God- hunted down the heretics as part of their mission. No doubt the order has done wonderful things since, but I can’t imagine voting for Dominic.

    • Nancy R's Gravatar Nancy R
      February 17, 2016 - 11:27 pm | Permalink

      The Domine Cane — ouch. Glad I voted for Constance.

  151. Sarah- 15 years old's Gravatar Sarah- 15 years old
    February 17, 2016 - 8:41 pm | Permalink

    I want to go into the practice of medicine when I get older. And I really look up to Constance because she help a ton of people even thought is was a scary time. Good job Constance!

    • February 17, 2016 - 8:44 pm | Permalink

      Go for it, Sarah! We could use an “Official Doctor of Lent Madness” so keep us posted.

  152. andrea's Gravatar andrea
    February 17, 2016 - 9:39 pm | Permalink

    Constance. For staying when people got sick (Thank you Oliver!) through two epidemics, and dealing with bugs. Go nurses!

  153. February 17, 2016 - 10:23 pm | Permalink

    I am glad Geoff McLarney mentioned the rosary which has been credited to Dominic as I enjoy creating prayer beads; also grateful for Dominic’s attention to preaching the word and engaging the listeners; but ultimately I am voting for Constance as she is not commonly included in books of the saints and she is new to me. Meeting new saints is one of the great blessings of Lent Madness!

  154. Cynthia Freels's Gravatar Cynthia Freels
    February 17, 2016 - 10:48 pm | Permalink

    Constance, she has my vote as a RN for 39 years working with homeless families….and she had it much tougher then I…….

  155. Anthony Lee's Gravatar Anthony Lee
    February 17, 2016 - 11:16 pm | Permalink

    I can see why Constance is winning in a landslide, of which I am a part. I’m not terribly impressed by people who start monastic orders (except for Francis) or people who spend very much time fighting heretics. Saving people from deadly diseases is a better way to spend one’s time.

  156. Leamarie's Gravatar Leamarie
    February 17, 2016 - 11:44 pm | Permalink

    Just barely got back to the computor to vote today. Constance got my vote for braving the mosquitos and yellow fever to tend the sick and dying. Makes me think of today’s mosquito born disease causing micro cephelous. True bravery. I also seem to have a bias toward more modern folk for whom much less myth has developed. Constance strikes me as real, true and brave, and constant!

  157. February 18, 2016 - 12:11 am | Permalink

    I expected to vote for Dominic, because of the great Dominican tradition; but when considering the individual rather than the entire tradition, had to go for Constance. Very brave and selfless.

  158. Sue T's Gravatar Sue T
    February 18, 2016 - 1:20 am | Permalink

    Interesting that there are so many voting for Constance because of the work she did, yet Wilberforce lost even though he did such great work as well…

  159. MLM in NJ's Gravatar MLM in NJ
    February 18, 2016 - 3:36 am | Permalink

    In honor of two members of my family who are/were teaching sisters, I cast my vote for Sr. Constance and her Companion Martyrs, women who certainly knew what could happen to them but chose to obey God’s command to “love their neighbors as themselves.” I pray we all can do the same in similar circumstances.

  160. Roy Te Turner's Gravatar Roy Te Turner
    February 18, 2016 - 7:59 am | Permalink

    I have my great grandfather’s medical school diploma on my wall. He graduated in 1872 in Memphis so it’s quite possible he may have known Constance and even helped to care for some of the same patients. No proof but it’s nice to think so.

  161. Bill's Gravatar Bill
    February 18, 2016 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    To quote the very first sentence in this maatch-up: “Only in Lent Madness would you find a monk battling a nun across the centuries.”
    I’m not so sure about that. I think you would find plenty of contention between nun’s of today vs. monks of ANY time.

  162. Philip King-Lowe's Gravatar Philip King-Lowe
    February 18, 2016 - 12:11 pm | Permalink

    One correction though, St. Dominic was not a monk, he was a friar. There is an actual difference. Monks take vows of stability, friars do not. Friar is a word for “fraternity”, Monk in greek means; “one”.

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