Swithun vs. Molly Brant

“Wait, St. Swithun was a real person?” We get that a lot. “Wait, Molly Brant was a real person?” We never get that. Nonetheless, welcome to the first and only Saturday match-up of Lent Madness 2015. Go ahead, sleep late and dally over your coffee while you read about these two saintly souls. But don’t get used to it: after today’s battle, voting will return bright and early on Monday morning with Hadewijch facing off against Juan Diego.

In yesterday’s action, David Oakerhater stunned Teresa of Avila in the first major upset of the season. In heavy voting (another day, another record total), David scored 60% of the vote to Teresa’s 40% and will go on to face the winner of William Laud vs. King Kamehameha in the Saintly Sixteen.

Yes, folks, it’s called Lent Madness for a reason. If your bracket is busted, you’re not alone. But stick around — the real goal is to learn about some amazing people, not to “win” Lent. Of course if you do stand victorious at the end of the season, you have every right to gloat. In a loving, Christian kind of way, of course. 

As long as you’re enjoying a leisurely morning, why not listen to Tim chatting about all things Lent Madness from yesterday’s edition of Boston Public Radio? Click here and then scroll to 1:28 of the broadcast to catch the only segment that really matters.


Saint Swithun, often humorously referenced as the patron of the generic country church “in the field” or “in the swamp,” was an actual Anglo-Saxon bishop and was enshrined at Winchester Cathedral. He is revered for posthumous miracle working and is believed to hold sway over the weather, especially the rain. According to tradition, the weather on his feast day of July 15 continues for forty days. And Californians, take note: Saint Swithun can also be prayed to for the relief of drought.

Swithun was a pious Bishop of Winchester in the ninth century. He convinced King Æthelwulf to bequeath a tenth of his royal lands to the Church, and with those lands Swithun built and restored churches with noted zeal. The king relied on the revered bishop for spiritual counsel, while another bishop advised him on temporal matters. Swithun was known as a friend of the poor who traveled his diocese on foot. A single miracle was attributed to the bishop while he was alive. Workmen were said to have maliciously broken an old woman’s eggs. He picked them up, and they were miraculously restored.

Very little else of his life was recorded, and the history of his bodily remains was most notable to his sainthood. He died on July 2, 862. On his deathbed the bishop was said to have begged to be buried outside where people might pass over his grave and raindrops fall upon it. Consequently, British lore holds that Saint Swithun’s day foretells the weather.

July, it will rain for 40 days.
For forty days it will remain:
St. Swithun’s day if thou be fair:
For forty days ‘twill rain nae mare.

More than a hundred years after his death, Swithun was made patron of Winchester Cathedral. His body was transferred from its earthen grave to Æthelwold’s new cathedral, and the move was accompanied by many reported miracles. Subsequently, his body was divided among a number of smaller shrines. His head was taken to Canterbury Cathedral, while Peterborough Abbey came to be in possession of one arm. The Winchester shrine to Swithun was demolished in 1538 during the English Reformation, but a modern representation of it was rebuilt in the cathedral, so one can still visit with pleas for rain and egg repair.

Collect for Swithun

Almighty God, by whose grace we celebrate again the feast of your servant Swithun: grant that, as he governed with gentleness the people committed to his care, so we, rejoicing in our Christian inheritance, may always seek to build up your Church in unity and love; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Amber Belldene

mbrant-bio-portraitbMolly Brant (Konwatsijayenni “Someone Lends Her a Flower”)

Molly Brant was born in 1736 along the Mohawk River in present-day central New York. In an age when women, much less Native American women, rarely had a voice in public discourse, Molly Brant became a well-regarded Mohawk leader, helping to promote peaceful relations between the Iroquois nation and the British government during the Revolutionary War era. A dedicated Anglican, she came to be known by the Church as the “Witness to the Faith Among the Mohawks.”

Raised in the Ohio Territory, Molly Brant returned to her native village, where she quickly established herself as a leader among the Mohawk Nation. She sought to draw fellow Mohawks into the Anglican faith without dismissing their native culture and spirituality. Her work garnered the attention of Sir William Johnson, a widower and the superintendent of Northern Indian Affairs. She became his common-law wife, and together, they had nine children. As Johnson’s wife, Brant served as an influential and authoritative voice of the Iroquois people in dealing with the British and an essential factor in Johnson’s reception as superintendent among Native Americans. The respect and esteem the British held for Brant was not only unique during that era but it was also key to preserving peaceful relations between the two nations and cultures.

During the American Revolution, Brant remained loyal to Great Britain, providing lodging and food to British soldiers and uniting four of the six Iroquois nations as Loyalists. Two years into the war, she and her family were forced to flee to Onondaga, where she remained until the war’s end in order to avoid imprisonment by the Patriots. Despite her forced relocation, Brant continued to work for harmony among the Iroquois people and their European neighbors. Her deft leadership led one commander of the British military to declare that Brant was “far superior to that of all their chiefs put together.”

Upon the surrender of the British in Yorktown, Virginia, in 1783, Brant moved with her family to Cataraqui in Canada’s province of Ontario, where she served as a founding member of both the town of Kingston and its first Anglican church. She remained near Kingston until her death in 1796.

Collect for Molly Brant

Maker and lover of all creation, you endued Molly Brant with the gifts of justice and loyalty, and made her a wise and prudent clan mother in the household of the Mohawk nation: Draw us also toward the goal of our faith, that we may at last attain the full dignity of our nature in our true native land, where with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit you live and reign, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Maria Kane


Swithin vs. Molly Brant

  • Molly Brant (58%, 3,955 Votes)
  • Swithun (42%, 2,919 Votes)

Total Voters: 6,874

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279 Comments to "Swithun vs. Molly Brant"

  1. Kathy Hartley's Gravatar Kathy Hartley
    February 21, 2015 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    I teach at a high school whose core mission is social justice. Love Swithin, but my vote just had to go to the peacemaker Molly.

  2. Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
    February 21, 2015 - 8:11 am | Permalink

    What?! No comments yet?

  3. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    February 21, 2015 - 8:12 am | Permalink

    Molly’s work was admirable, but she was a Tory! Longing for St. Swithun to bring the warmth and sun and mend my eggs.

    • Beth Parkhurst's Gravatar Beth Parkhurst
      February 21, 2015 - 9:59 am | Permalink

      Hey, Swithun was pro-British too.

      • Bring Back Philander!'s Gravatar Bring Back Philander!
        February 21, 2015 - 2:42 pm | Permalink

        Perfect response. 🙂 I’m reading the comments, hoping to be swayed, as this is a tough call. It’s a bitterly cold winter, so I could use some help with the weather, but Brant knew a thing or two about snow & ice as well…

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 10:25 am | Permalink

      The Liberals and Tories (and NDP!) didn’t yet exist as such in the 18th century. It’s hard to speculate about what political party she would favour just because she was a Loyalist.

      • Carolyn D. Mack's Gravatar Carolyn D. Mack
        February 21, 2015 - 10:40 am | Permalink

        In the US, British loyalists are referred to as Tories because the Whigs, such as Burke, tended to support the American cause of free trade and representation in Parliament. Of course, Molly Brant was looking to the needs of her people in supporting the British, since the Proclamation Act had barred American settlement of the Northwest Territory and promised that territory to the Native Americans.

      • Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
        February 21, 2015 - 10:49 am | Permalink

        Tory meant someone favoring the British during the Revolution.

        • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
          February 21, 2015 - 11:30 pm | Permalink

          That is not the sense in which the word is used in textbooks of Canadian history (which, after all, we are talking about) and I would suggest that it is unhelpfully vague.

      • Gil Wilson's Gravatar Gil Wilson
        February 22, 2015 - 6:51 pm | Permalink

        Your choices were not political parties. She was either a Tory or Patriot as to who she supported in the American Revolution. She was a Tory.

    • Diane Kolb's Gravatar Diane Kolb
      February 21, 2015 - 11:39 am | Permalink

      I agree. The revolution was horrible and bloody if Molly had tried to sway the British to leave and free the colonies!

    • Robert Coates's Gravatar Robert Coates
      February 22, 2015 - 3:16 pm | Permalink

      Most Native Americans were Loyalist. Most supported the British during the war of 1812. Considering the outcome of their interactions with the Americans, one really cannot blame them.

  4. Cecelia Rood's Gravatar Cecelia Rood
    February 21, 2015 - 8:12 am | Permalink

    The mere fact Molly had 9 children, plus actively brought the Anglican religion to her people without dismissing their culture she has earned my vote.

    • Mary Jane Ingalls Buchanan's Gravatar Mary Jane Ingalls Buchanan
      February 21, 2015 - 10:22 am | Permalink

      Remarkable woman, indeed. Is there any history of her descendents?

      • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
        February 22, 2015 - 12:27 am | Permalink

        Yes, I believe the Johnson baronets are fairly well documented.

    • Lesley Hildrey's Gravatar Lesley Hildrey
      February 21, 2015 - 12:59 pm | Permalink

      I totally agree! She couldn’t have slept much!

  5. February 21, 2015 - 8:13 am | Permalink

    I voted for Swithun.
    Brant backed the right Kingdom in heaven, but apparently the wrong one on earth.

    • Susan's Gravatar Susan
      February 21, 2015 - 8:52 am | Permalink

      You hit it on the nail!

    • saskia's Gravatar saskia
      February 21, 2015 - 9:08 am | Permalink


    • Beth Parkhurst's Gravatar Beth Parkhurst
      February 21, 2015 - 10:04 am | Permalink

      Brant was advocating for what she thought best for her people. The British representative to the Iroquois, Sir William Johnson, dealt with the Iroquois fairly and respectfully. Compare that with what happened after the Americans won the Revolution.

  6. JustMeJo's Gravatar JustMeJo
    February 21, 2015 - 8:13 am | Permalink

    All tied up at 8:09 am! Sorry, Molly, but I just couldn’t bring myself to vote for a Loyalist. Besides, I am hoping that St Swithun/Swithin will reward my vote with a turnup in the miserable weather we have been suffering through this entire winter!

  7. Barbara Cockrell's Gravatar Barbara Cockrell
    February 21, 2015 - 8:19 am | Permalink

    I realize I may have to turn in my social consciousness creds for this vote, but as admirable as Molly Brant may be, St. Swithun has always been one of my faves. Just say that name a couple of times and see how nicely it rolls off the tongue. I just couldn’t pass up a chance3 to vote for this old friend!

    • Mary W's Gravatar Mary W
      February 21, 2015 - 10:42 pm | Permalink

      Yes, but if we knew how to pronounce Molly Brant’s native name, would that perhaps roll off the tongue too?

      I can’t decide.

      Ah, Archbishops and Maple, I miss your guidance!

  8. pris's Gravatar pris
    February 21, 2015 - 8:20 am | Permalink

    I want to vote for Molly, but my tab won’t open

  9. Thomas van Brunt's Gravatar Thomas van Brunt
    February 21, 2015 - 8:24 am | Permalink

    For all the times my seminary profs [Sewanee] referred to St. Swithun in the Swamps: Swithun for the Halo!

    • William Loring's Gravatar William Loring
      February 21, 2015 - 11:07 pm | Permalink

      My seminary profs favorite ‘John Doe’ parish was St. Tiffany’s by the Bank; but today it is Swithun for me — not only were we married on his feast, but he is also patron of the beautiful cathedral in Stavanger that we visited recently.
      Also, in 18th c. England, Conservatives were called Tories, and Liberals, Whigs. In America Loyalists identified with English Tories, and Patriots with Whigs –or myself I identify with Patriots (who largely set the parameters for American conservativism) but with English Tories so I can sympathize with Molly, though I disagree. In different pairings I might well vote for Molly, but I really do honor Swithuntoo much to vote against him.

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 11:31 pm | Permalink

      Before the introduction of the 1959 BCP, my parish used an Anglo-Catholic adaptation of the 1662 prayer book (we never adopted 1918) called “St Swithun’s Prayer Book”!

  10. Gale's Gravatar Gale
    February 21, 2015 - 8:25 am | Permalink

    I voted for St Swithun because there was a bbc tv show Doctor in the House where the Interns worked at St Swithun’s Hospital in London – I remember it fondly – this is how thinking works on Saturday am

    • Another Peg's Gravatar Another Peg
      February 21, 2015 - 12:38 pm | Permalink

      Gale, I remember it fondly, too! Thanks for the reference. I voted for St. Swithun for many reasons (besides “Doctor in the House”), including the hope he will make it to the kitsch round and we shall behold wonders indeed.

  11. Audrey's Gravatar Audrey
    February 21, 2015 - 8:26 am | Permalink

    I’m reading about both of them for the first time. Both impressive both vote would have to go to Molly if I could get my tab to open!

  12. lysbeth Andrews's Gravatar lysbeth Andrews
    February 21, 2015 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    Could not get on Twitter to hear your wonderful radio program, SORRY. What is wrong with NPR ?

  13. Tom's Gravatar Tom
    February 21, 2015 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    Scott, My sentiments exactly!! St Swithun, I’ve never heard of you, but you got my vote.

  14. relling's Gravatar relling
    February 21, 2015 - 8:29 am | Permalink

    I cannot vote for a Tory. Just can’t do it.

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      February 21, 2015 - 9:58 am | Permalink

      Why not think of Molly as a Canadian? That makes her someone who valued peaceful means of separating from Mother England. Give peace a chance: Vote Molly!!!

      • Katharine Graham's Gravatar Katharine Graham
        February 21, 2015 - 3:41 pm | Permalink

        Think of Molly as a Mohawk, then; she was never really “English”, she was Native, not Colonial.

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 21, 2015 - 10:16 am | Permalink

      Several people have said “I cannot vote for a Tory.” I knew from the beginning that would be the case, but it makes me wonder: When John Wesley was up for the Halo last year, did he lose votes because he was a Tory?

  15. Karen Moore's Gravatar Karen Moore
    February 21, 2015 - 8:31 am | Permalink

    Hard to vote for someone who ended up with his body parts scattered around England. So I
    in the spirit of the command to love l my enemies, and in support of native peoples and women, I voted for Molly.

    • February 21, 2015 - 12:29 pm | Permalink

      After reading this reply I am truly sorry I did not vote for Molly. What was I thinking and why did I vote for St.S? Have to examine my reasoning and honestly come to grips with my selection.I think it was based on pure sentiment. This is not a good enough reason…..I am now condemned to be a long Saturday….snowed in and thinking….

  16. Jim Bimbi's Gravatar Jim Bimbi
    February 21, 2015 - 8:32 am | Permalink

    Time to erase Swithun’s name as a punchline and grant him some well deserved respect! And no cracking of raw eggs today – soft boiled in the shell in honor of the saint!

    • Mollie Turner's Gravatar Mollie Turner
      February 21, 2015 - 10:44 am | Permalink

      Oh, dear! We already fried ours…and you do have to crack them.

  17. Jane Trambley's Gravatar Jane Trambley
    February 21, 2015 - 8:32 am | Permalink

    Maybe if Swithun succeeds spring will come.

  18. February 21, 2015 - 8:33 am | Permalink

    I can’t seem to vote today. Is there a problem?

    • February 21, 2015 - 8:41 am | Permalink

      Don’t think so. 600 people have voted. Try refreshing your browser?

      • Richard Hooton's Gravatar Richard Hooton
        February 21, 2015 - 9:45 am | Permalink

        Tim – I have tried to vote from email – it does not work today. Only when I view comments and go to webpage can I view results and vote myself.

        • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
          February 21, 2015 - 6:39 pm | Permalink

          From what I understand the only way to vote is via the website. Is that not correct Scott/Tim?

      • February 21, 2015 - 10:48 am | Permalink

        Yes, there is a problem. I had to go to the web site to vote as did many others.

        • ConnieHJ's Gravatar ConnieHJ
          February 21, 2015 - 1:15 pm | Permalink

          Yup, me too.

          • Mary W's Gravatar Mary W
            February 21, 2015 - 10:45 pm | Permalink

            The ‘vote’ at the bottom of the email has never worked. It seems like it should be a button that would take you to the website but isn’t. The best way to go to the website is to click on the heading at the top of the email body.

          • Marisa's Gravatar Marisa
            February 22, 2015 - 8:24 am | Permalink

            Thanks to all the replies regarding my voting problem. Although I happened to figure it out before I got replies, these replies will help me to remember next time! God Bless You all.

      • Kathryn's Gravatar Kathryn
        February 21, 2015 - 3:01 pm | Permalink

        I also had trouble with the vote button replaced by a field name in a bracket in the original email. However, following the saints examples, I persevered and was able to vote once I clicked on the comments.

    • Elaine Jenkins's Gravatar Elaine Jenkins
      February 21, 2015 - 3:39 pm | Permalink

      Internet Explorer has had a problem since yesterday. They are working on it. In the meantime try another browser. Google Chrome (which I find somewhat annoying) is working as well as other browsers.

      I am on Team Molly! (And just so you know, from the English perspective, George III was not liked by the British folks as his behavior was so bizarre — see “The Madness of King George”– and because he was actually German (House of Hanover). There were folks in England who saw the revolutionaries as great patriots).

  19. Judy Hoover's Gravatar Judy Hoover
    February 21, 2015 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    I like them both. Anyone who can stave off rain during the rainy season must be good. BUT a Native American with an Irish name? She managed nine children, brought others into the Christian faith while maintaining her connection to Native spirituality? She is a winner in my book.

  20. February 21, 2015 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    My family has roots in the Mohawk Valley so this is an easy choice for me. Too bad Molly defected to Canada. Interesting the Fonda NY area has a shrine to St. Kateri Tekakwitha but I don’t recall any special recognition for Molly Brant. Maybe a Fulton County resident can enlighten me.

    • Beth C's Gravatar Beth C
      February 21, 2015 - 5:48 pm | Permalink

      Tom it’s like you read my mind. My mother was born and raised in Johnstown, and I knew the name Molly Brant was familiar, but didn’t make the connection ’til I read her bio. She got my vote!

  21. Laurie Atwater's Gravatar Laurie Atwater
    February 21, 2015 - 8:36 am | Permalink

    Molly may have worked toward reconciliation and peace, but it was at cross-purposes with her common-law husband, who was actually pretty notorious for isolating the tribes and discouraging alliances between them. I didn’t know about Molly before I read this, but I knew about Johnson!

  22. Ben's Gravatar Ben
    February 21, 2015 - 8:37 am | Permalink

    As a builder and restorer of churches, as well as a friend of the poor, my vote goes to Saint Swithun.

  23. Patrice's Gravatar Patrice
    February 21, 2015 - 8:38 am | Permalink

    Ah, dear Molly, if only you had wed a Patriot!

  24. Randall Byrd's Gravatar Randall Byrd
    February 21, 2015 - 8:39 am | Permalink

    While I can’t blame Molly for siding with anyone against the invaders of her land, my vote goes to St. Swithun! He convinced a king to tithe, mended broken eggs (and a woman’s heart), and walked his Parish giving him more time to contemplate his relationship with God.

  25. Denise's Gravatar Denise
    February 21, 2015 - 8:40 am | Permalink

    Swithun wins my vote. Who can’t love a guy that mends broken eggs?

  26. Matthew's Gravatar Matthew
    February 21, 2015 - 8:40 am | Permalink

    I know she’s a loyalist, but seeing as how we know more about what she actually did, I’ll go with Molly Brant.

  27. Penny Gordon's Gravatar Penny Gordon
    February 21, 2015 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    I’ve always had a fondness for Swithun, and hadn’t heard of Molly Brant until now. I’m ignoring her politics and voting for Molly, though I will be praying to Swithun to end the winter weather! This is in honor of my 10x-great grandmother, who was also of the Mohawk nation.

  28. John Charles Powell's Gravatar John Charles Powell
    February 21, 2015 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    I have served too many congregations with too many parishioners with wide ranging political views to slight Molly on that count. Social justice and pastoral care are too important. I am compelled to vote for Molly and her drive for harmony in the Church.

  29. Betsey's Gravatar Betsey
    February 21, 2015 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    I’ve a wide Anglophile streak, but reading about St Swithun’s remains getting split up just turned my interest away. Not his fault, of course, what people did after his death, but I stayed with the “party line” today and gave my vote to Molly. It’s just fun madness, after all 🙂

  30. Elizabeth Massey's Gravatar Elizabeth Massey
    February 21, 2015 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    You need to decide the correct spelling of St. S’s name. Is it Swithin or Swithun? Please correct ASAP.

    My father’s ancestors were Loyalists in Providence RI; after the Revolution they decamped for Nova Scotia. My father was the only descendent to return to America – happily. I have ‘bonds of affection” for both countries. Voting for Molly Brant was easy!

    Liz Massey

    • Em's Gravatar Em
      February 21, 2015 - 3:55 pm | Permalink

      I had to vote for Molly for the same reason as Liz: my dad used to say that his Tory/Loyalist ancestors high-tailed it for Nova Scotia after they lost the war, and no one dared return until his father (my grandfather), in the late 1800s. Besides, Molly was a peacemaker and a church-planter!

      But if St. S doesn’t win, does that mean we are condemned to snowfall until July 15? (and yes, it’s started snowing yet again out here in western Mass, altho’ we have nothing to complain about with a mere half the Boston totals.)

      Great interview, Tim… and it was nice to hear Jim Braude’s voice; I miss him already after his retirement from NECN only a week ago.

  31. February 21, 2015 - 8:45 am | Permalink

    Another tough vote today. I love the stories of ST Swithin, my sister was born on his feast day but I had to go with Molly Brant. She was a peace maker and through her efforts, brought many in her nation to the Church.

  32. Betsy Heilman's Gravatar Betsy Heilman
    February 21, 2015 - 8:46 am | Permalink

    It would seem that Swithin’s weather influencing abilities would give him an advantage as we expect another winter storm on the east coast–he got my vote!

  33. Susan Comer's Gravatar Susan Comer
    February 21, 2015 - 8:49 am | Permalink

    As usual, there are good and saintly people on each side of almost all earthly conflicts. Molly Brant rose above such differences, but showed loyalty the people who brought her to Christ. She continued to be a great peacemaker and evangelist for Christ. She became a war refugee, yet continued to spread the true Kingdom. I vote for Molly.

  34. TJ's Gravatar TJ
    February 21, 2015 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    A peacemaker is a wonderful thing but pursuing peace with an invader you’re unlikely to defeat anyway is an example of pragmatism more than saintliness. Molly’s faithfulness as a Christian on the other hand is an example to all.

    Alas, I am also pragmatic and, being in Chicago, see the value in getting on the good side of the guy who controls the weather. St. Swithun it is!

  35. Catherine Harcus's Gravatar Catherine Harcus
    February 21, 2015 - 8:51 am | Permalink

    I would vote for Molly Brandt if my page would allow me. The voe page says vote =110???????

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      February 21, 2015 - 10:02 am | Permalink

      So did mine. So I went to the website (just click on the header and you’ll get there), where everything is working just fine.

  36. Diane's Gravatar Diane
    February 21, 2015 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    A lifetime ago, I was life professed in a religious order on St. Swithun’s Day.
    Over ten years ago, I was married on St. Swithun’s Day.
    Need I say more?
    Go, Swithun, Go!
    And, a repeat request to those ferrets, please stop pairing old time saints versus relatively modern.

  37. Diane's Gravatar Diane
    February 21, 2015 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    A lifetime ago, I was life professed in a religious order on St. Swithun’s Day.
    Over ten years ago, I was married on St. Swithun’s Day.
    Need I say more?
    Go, Swithun, Go!

  38. Catherine Harcus's Gravatar Catherine Harcus
    February 21, 2015 - 8:53 am | Permalink

    My page does not give me the opportunity to vote. Help!!

    • Betsey's Gravatar Betsey
      February 21, 2015 - 9:07 am | Permalink

      Hi Catherine, try refreshing the page, also could try a different browser .. good luck.

    • Megan's Gravatar Megan
      February 21, 2015 - 9:53 am | Permalink

      Catherine, go to the website to vote. http://www.lentmadness.org

  39. Susan's Gravatar Susan
    February 21, 2015 - 8:54 am | Permalink

    Molly lost me when I read that she left peril, instead of staying to work and bring people together. Taking sides was not her spiritual job, in my opinion; I reserve that to God. I live in a rural area, and the story of Swithun put a smile on my face–he gets my vote.

  40. Ann's Gravatar Ann
    February 21, 2015 - 8:56 am | Permalink

    Swithun. He was an attentive and energetic pastor. He wanted to be with his flock even after death. He can make it rain. (Can he stop snow?) Go, Saint Swithun!

  41. February 21, 2015 - 9:02 am | Permalink

    My vote goes to Molly today. It would be great to see a Native person do well and perhaps allow for more attention for their positive legacy and that of all Native peoples. Of indigenous faith or Christian, the folks I knew in SD always had something to teach me about God. Hece tu welo.

  42. Robert Corey's Gravatar Robert Corey
    February 21, 2015 - 9:03 am | Permalink

    Molly Brant! She took an ally against the invaders of her land — like the French before, the English were interested in political alliance with the tribes. The colonists just wanted lebensraum. She took the right side — the losing side. So did my GGGGGGF, Gideon Corey, UEL, exiled to New Brunswick.

  43. Russ's Gravatar Russ
    February 21, 2015 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    My family lost their home in the Mohawk Valley to the Irquois during the Revolution. Many of their neighbors lost more than their homes.

    • Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
      February 21, 2015 - 11:46 am | Permalink

      Russ; Hmmm I guess you did not vote for Molly

  44. saskia's Gravatar saskia
    February 21, 2015 - 9:06 am | Permalink

    Hands down, had to go with Swithun. Here in North Texas we are under stage 3 water restrictions. I been you St Swithun intercede on our behalf to bring rain upon our land.

  45. Katie's Gravatar Katie
    February 21, 2015 - 9:09 am | Permalink

    I was born on St. Swithun’s feast day, so I have to go with him. Also I’m a gardener and we can always use the rain. However, I’m 0-2 so far in the bracket and if you look at it as one who mends eggs to one who joins nations, I’m thinking I’ll be 0-3 tomorrow. Who would have thought St. Teresa would already be out? Go Swithun!!!

  46. Ed Rhodes's Gravatar Ed Rhodes
    February 21, 2015 - 9:10 am | Permalink

    Without making any claims for the peacefulness of the rival Indian tribes that the Iroquois brutally sought to exterminate during this period and the mass migrations that their tribal conquests caused, and similarly without making any moral claims for the behavior of the white settlers of the border and trans-Appalachian regions who were slaughtered by the Iroquois, I simply want to point out that a characterization of Molly Brant (or of her common-law husband) as a “peacemaker” is a… intriguing… one. I suppose that General Sherman was also a “peacemaker” when he resolved to “make Georgia howl” and burned a wide swathe across the American south, but it isn’t the first adjective that leaps to mind, and it certainly isn’t the “turn the other cheek” sort of peacemaking that we often associate with the word…. I’ll happily respect fellow voters who vote for Molly Brant, but I’d like to make sure that they understand that there were many, many widows and orphans who would have argued vigorously against her “saintliness” and that of her common-law husband.

    • Mary Angela Brinton's Gravatar Mary Angela Brinton
      February 21, 2015 - 9:25 am | Permalink

      Oh dear, perhaps I should rescind my vote. I find it interesting that history is often most loudly known through its recorder, the victor.

    • February 21, 2015 - 6:36 pm | Permalink

      Excellent points by both. Such conundrums challenges us in discussing many a saint and addressing hot button issues in our own lives. Life is not easy, never mind a holy one. That’s why I love Luther’s point that we are at best sinner-saints. Grace wins the day.

  47. Deb's Gravatar Deb
    February 21, 2015 - 9:10 am | Permalink

    St. Swithun needs some respect. I love that all he wanted was the rain to fall on his grave. It’s terrible that they split his body and put it inside in not just one, but several, locations.

    • Pat's Gravatar Pat
      February 21, 2015 - 11:42 am | Permalink

      Deb, My thoughts exactly. I love that he wanted to have the rain fall on his body in the earth, and what a shame he was disturbed. I think Molly may have had a harder row to hoe, so to speak because her tasks seem a lot more complicated, but still I love the idea of St. Swithun and he gets my vote.

    • February 21, 2015 - 4:13 pm | Permalink

      I’m with you, Deb. I’m for Swithun.

    • William Loring's Gravatar William Loring
      February 21, 2015 - 11:18 pm | Permalink

      Not really so terrible — it was a sign of high regard that everyone wanted a piece (literally) of him.

  48. Linda's Gravatar Linda
    February 21, 2015 - 9:11 am | Permalink

    Molly and her abilities make her, in my mind, a stand-out. A peace-maker, one who brought others to meet and worship Christ: these are foremost in comparison with human power struggles.

  49. martin's Gravatar martin
    February 21, 2015 - 9:12 am | Permalink

    I voted for swithun because he felt more like one of the Narnia books (age 7)

  50. Grace Cangialosi's Gravatar Grace Cangialosi
    February 21, 2015 - 9:14 am | Permalink

    Tough one!! I never knew there was a real St. Swithin, though for years I served in a couple of those “St. S in the S kinds of places! But he already has statues and sainthood, and Molly needs recognition for her social justice work! Therefore…..!
    And how DO you spell St. S’s name, anyway? You guys have spelled it both ways here!

  51. Ang's Gravatar Ang
    February 21, 2015 - 9:15 am | Permalink

    St. Swithun in the Swamps for the win!

  52. Mary Angela Brinton's Gravatar Mary Angela Brinton
    February 21, 2015 - 9:17 am | Permalink

    I was also unable to vote though I refreshed the browser twice. Due to the state of unrest in our world , I would have voted for Molly. I will trust you to enter my vote as you trust me to NOT vote again. 🙂

  53. Miriam's Gravatar Miriam
    February 21, 2015 - 9:18 am | Permalink

    I was able to vote by clicking “comments”. I voted for Molly, but wish she had sided with the Patriots.

  54. Sean's Gravatar Sean
    February 21, 2015 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    Who knew there was a Saint responsible for egg repair. I wonder if he will help with the success of our classroom incubation unit?

  55. Ruby's Gravatar Ruby
    February 21, 2015 - 9:23 am | Permalink

    I thought that Iriquois women and elders were part of governing councils in those days and that Benjamin Franklin and others borrowed some of their ideas in writing our Constitution. I also understood that Elizabeth Cady Stanton and friends in Seneca Falls, upstate NY, borrowed some of their ideas. On vacation so can’t check sources, just saying. It doesn’t take anything from Molly. You don’t have to be a downtrodden women to be a saint.

    • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
      February 21, 2015 - 6:47 pm | Permalink

      I believe you are correct.

  56. Alison Bentley's Gravatar Alison Bentley
    February 21, 2015 - 9:26 am | Permalink

    The key phrase for me which led me to vote for Molly was: “She sought to draw fellow Mohawks into the Anglican faith without dismissing their native culture and spirituality.” What a pity this example was not followed by other church leaders.

  57. Sonia's Gravatar Sonia
    February 21, 2015 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    I grew up with the legend of 40 days of rain if it rained on St. Swithun Day so I have to go with him – even though I’m a Loyalist at heart!

  58. Kathy's Gravatar Kathy
    February 21, 2015 - 9:28 am | Permalink

    Going to the comments will bring up the voting site. St Swithun it is!! Always had a soft spot for him.

  59. Mary Angela Brinton's Gravatar Mary Angela Brinton
    February 21, 2015 - 9:31 am | Permalink

    Ah, one must click on the first ” x vs. y ” that is blue and at the top of the page to go to the voting page.

  60. gillian butler's Gravatar gillian butler
    February 21, 2015 - 9:32 am | Permalink

    My dad was a Brit, who used to mourn the loss of the colonies by wearing a black tie on July 4, but he eventually got his US citizenship. Come on US-ers, Molly was a Tory! We can’t give her the victory. Go Swithun! My bracket was already busted yesterday….sigh.

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 10:40 am | Permalink

      I find it a bit baffling that yesterday there was so much consciousness in the comments about the evils of colonialism, and today we have all this chest-thumping jingoism: you “can’t give her the victory” because she had the nerve to side against American settler expansionism? As a Canadian, I am rather disappointed to learn that so many voters seem to consider us automatically beyond the pale of sainthood.

      • alynn's Gravatar alynn
        February 21, 2015 - 12:35 pm | Permalink

        I agree with you about the different tone in contemplations about which Saint to vote for – I was looking for a word to describe it but I’ll have to take y0ur w0rd use of BAFFLED –
        yet in a perplexed/intrigued sort of way. Put it down to a fascination with how we humans think .

  61. Chris's Gravatar Chris
    February 21, 2015 - 9:36 am | Permalink

    Swithin is patron of the church in Forks, Washington. You know Forks – “Home” of the Twilight books/movies. It rains in Forks … and rains and rains. I must vote for Swithin and maybe bring a little sunshine to the folks who live in the Pacific Northwest rainforest.

  62. Ruth's Gravatar Ruth
    February 21, 2015 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    As I member of my diocese’s stewardship commission, I felt drawn to that great fundraiser, St. Swithun. But, I just couldn’t vote against Molly. Hope my bishop, who hails from Britain, will be placated by her politics.

  63. Phillip's Gravatar Phillip
    February 21, 2015 - 9:38 am | Permalink

    I was actually ready to vote for Molly, but then learned that she was a slaveowner (a detail omitted in the blog post today): http://www.josephbrant.com/joseph-brant-family/molly-brant/ . Can we look to somebody who held slaves as a model for social justice? I don’t think I can, even if Molly has many other virtues.

    St. Swithun was a friend of the poor with an environmental bent (travelled his dioceses by foot!). Given the popular piety of the time, I’m not sure he would have minded that his body was split up among different locations.

    • Diane's Gravatar Diane
      February 21, 2015 - 4:58 pm | Permalink

      I wonder how the blogger missed the slave owner thing of Mollie? She may not be so saintly after all?
      Thanks for the link

  64. Cai Armstrong's Gravatar Cai Armstrong
    February 21, 2015 - 9:39 am | Permalink

    When you get vote = and a number in your email message, click on the see all comments link to open the web page in your browser. This works for me every day.

    • sue's Gravatar sue
      February 21, 2015 - 10:23 am | Permalink

      works for me too

  65. NJ's Gravatar NJ
    February 21, 2015 - 9:40 am | Permalink

    With the brutal winter we’re having, I’d be pleased if Swithin could be of assistance.

  66. Sara P. Howrey's Gravatar Sara P. Howrey
    February 21, 2015 - 9:53 am | Permalink

    Swithun. Not a difficult choice.

  67. Lynn's Gravatar Lynn
    February 21, 2015 - 9:54 am | Permalink

    I always hear the name of Swithun in the voice of Bullwinkle J, Moose, thanks to a line from the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon. Swithun also brings to mind a “Come as Your Favorite Saint” party held by our parish one All Hallows Eve. My husband’s costume consisted of a black cassock and an umbrella. When he explained that he was St. Swithun, most people didn’t know who he was talking about, much less get the comical value of the umbrella. I loved learning about Molly Brant today, but sentimental memories prevailed over social activism in my voting this time.

  68. Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
    February 21, 2015 - 9:55 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately, you cannot scroll to the part of yesterday’s Boston Public Radio broadcast where Tim speaks. I just listened to an hour and a half of ranting about the transit system (which I had already heard from my son who lives in Boston) in order to listen to Tim on Lent Madness.

    It was enjoyable (the part about Lent Madness, not about the transit system) nonetheless.

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      February 21, 2015 - 10:25 am | Permalink

      You can, in Chrome browser.

  69. Anna Barton's Gravatar Anna Barton
    February 21, 2015 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    The email version did not include a vote button. I clicked on the website version to vote. Interesting pairing….

  70. Bill Sier's Gravatar Bill Sier
    February 21, 2015 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    Political thoughts aside (I had relatives that fought in the British Army during the American Revolution), Swithun did more for the advancement of the church as a whole than Molly. I understand her position, but in the fine balance of deciding who was a better Christian, I must go with the restorer of churches as opposed to the organizer of an ambush. This is not to say that warriors cannot be saints, but given the two choices, it’s Swithun for the win.

  71. Ron's Gravatar Ron
    February 21, 2015 - 10:01 am | Permalink

    Voted For Swithun cause we need water here in the South west too.

  72. john miller's Gravatar john miller
    February 21, 2015 - 10:03 am | Permalink

    I identify with Molly (except for the gender) for I too have often chosen the wrong political side. She also represents the impressive work that women have given to the Church despite little recognition. Consorting with kings as St. Swithun did, is distasteful to me, a republican.

    • Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
      February 21, 2015 - 12:19 pm | Permalink

      Molly reminds me of Flora MacDonald, who chose the loosing side – not once but twice:-).
      Flora also had a lot of children, but had time to rescue Bonnie Prince Charlie and later side with the Loyalist Clans in the South.

  73. Sandy's Gravatar Sandy
    February 21, 2015 - 10:07 am | Permalink

    I have to vote for the peace maker, no matter which side. And while raising 9 children!
    I wonder why she was a common law wife – maybe marriage to Native Americans was not allowed at that time?

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 21, 2015 - 1:13 pm | Permalink

      That is correct. Colonial law forbade formal marriage between Natives and settlers. But common law marriages between the two peoples were fairly widespread, I believe.

  74. February 21, 2015 - 10:09 am | Permalink

    To those experiencing some voting trouble, yes you must go to the website to vote. I forgot to put the “more” tab in that we had the last couple of days to bring you directly to http://www.lentmadness.org. You can’t vote from the e-mail. So, an extra click to the website and all will be well and all manner of voting will be well.

  75. February 21, 2015 - 10:10 am | Permalink

    I am more inclined to vote for the more modern saints, like David Oakerhater and Molly Brant, largely because the information we have on them is more reliable than the legends that have grown up around the more ancient saints. I like Molly for being the peacemaker and the fact that she was a Tory and still kept peace among tribes and European nations is still impressive. A woman who was so well respected in those days gets my vote easily. I am learning a lot about the saints of God here, which encourages me to be a bit more outspoken in my faith journey. Thank you.

  76. Grace Cangialosi's Gravatar Grace Cangialosi
    February 21, 2015 - 10:13 am | Permalink

    Too bad Humpty Dumpty didn’t meet St. Swithin/Swithun! They’d have had to write a whole different nursery rhyme! (Or none…)

  77. katie's Gravatar katie
    February 21, 2015 - 10:17 am | Permalink

    I’m in California and I’m voting for you st. Swithun. So, please send some rain!!! Though preferably NOT in July because that could ruin the grape crop. Amen!!!

  78. Carol Townsend's Gravatar Carol Townsend
    February 21, 2015 - 10:17 am | Permalink

    I was all set to vote for St. Swithun because of the great comics that Rev. Jay Sidebotham draws (google for those – you’ve seen them before, I’m sure) but after reading about Molly (a new saint to me) I had to go with her. She was the epitome of a Christian – she brought the Word to people, she worked for justice and peace among nations, and she worked for the spread of the church.

  79. Emily's Gravatar Emily
    February 21, 2015 - 10:19 am | Permalink

    When I vote I look for people who have impacted the most people ie. folks who were the hands and feet of God. Molly didn’t do anything like that….she cozyed up to the enemy, got other tribes to join her, today she’d be tried for treason. She had little or no lasting impact on anyone. I just can’t imagine why anyone would vote for her…

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 21, 2015 - 10:11 pm | Permalink

      You said you look for “folks who were the hands and feet of God. Molly didn’t do anything like that…”
      Then why did the Church come to regard her as the “Witness to the Faith Among the Mohawks”?
      She not only strove to commend the Gospel to her people, she was instrumental in preserving peace between them and the Europeans, both in this country and in Canada. You said “she cozied up to the enemy”. There is a popular misconception that the Loyalists were collaborators. They couldn’t be such because the British weren’t invaders, but the legally constituted colonial government. Hence the name “Loyalist”. They were loyal to the government. You said Molly “had little or no lasting impact on anyone.” Yet she was one of the founders of the present day city of Kingston and a charter member of St. George’s Anglican Church (now St. George’s Cathedral). She is honored in Canada as a “Person of National Historic Significance”. She is memorialized by a sculpture, a plaque, and a commemorative stamp. The Molly Brant Foundation (a non-profit that works to aid urban Natives) was established in her honor.
      And, as mentioned earlier, she touched many lives through her love for Jesus and being an instrument of his peace.

    • Carol Justice's Gravatar Carol Justice
      February 22, 2015 - 6:43 pm | Permalink

      Oh dear!

  80. sue's Gravatar sue
    February 21, 2015 - 10:19 am | Permalink

    Hey Tim and Scott I loved both of your interviews yesterday! I live in the middle of the area getting another winter storm this morning and they were a prefect way to spend time this morning. I also listened to the song posted in the comments yesterday “Christ has no body but you”. I loved it so much I went to you tube and listened to a few other renditions as well. So in closing THANK YOU THANK YOU SOOOO SOOOO MUCH for Lent Madness and all it does to enrich our lives.

  81. Alene's Gravatar Alene
    February 21, 2015 - 10:21 am | Permalink

    I’m in California. Voting for Swithun in hopes of rain…

  82. Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
    February 21, 2015 - 10:24 am | Permalink

    Molly, simply because of her beautiful and whimsical Iroquois name. It’s the first time I’ve ever thought about “someone” being a “lender” of flowers; very, very nice.

    It’s really too bad somebody can’t figure out how to miraculously restore St. Swithun to wholeness; the whole relic thing is actually pretty ironic when you think of it. All the King’s horses and all the King’s men couldn’t put Swithun together again?

    • Mollie Turner's Gravatar Mollie Turner
      February 21, 2015 - 11:05 am | Permalink

      Oh, wonderful, wonderful, and yet again wonderful!

  83. Donna's Gravatar Donna
    February 21, 2015 - 10:26 am | Permalink

    I could not vote through the email. There were no names or vote button. When I went to the website, I could.

  84. Carolyn Sharp's Gravatar Carolyn Sharp
    February 21, 2015 - 10:26 am | Permalink

    I voted for Molly Brant because her memory is honoured among her people the Mohawk. The North American wars among the Europeans caused many divisions among the native peoples of Turtle Island. They made alliances of all sorts – and, for those who are not native, our history of themand understanding of their choices is deeply shaped by our own place among the descendants of those Europeans. Molly Brant was a loyalist, loyal to her own people the Mohawk. The American War of Independance largely emptied the Mohawk Valley of the people whose name it bears. Molly Brant’s choices contributed to the survival of her own people when they made an exodus to a new home where they remain fiercely proud of their sovereignty. (Historical note: William Johnson died before 1776 and was a hero in the North American war between the French and English).

  85. Anne E.B.'s Gravatar Anne E.B.
    February 21, 2015 - 10:28 am | Permalink

    Saint Swithun for the Halo!

  86. February 21, 2015 - 10:28 am | Permalink

    I know it’s lame, but I had to vote for Swithun. 1) I live in California. I think we have discovered the answer to our drought. 2) When will we ever have the chance to vote for St. Swithun?!

    • Judy Batson's Gravatar Judy Batson
      February 21, 2015 - 12:38 pm | Permalink

      Dear Channing,

      I don’t think your vote was “lame” at all, but I voted for Molly. The dismemberment of his body parts and disregard for his burial wishes almost swayed me. I hadn’t heard of Swithun before, so I was glad to learn about him.


      Judy B

  87. Verdery's Gravatar Verdery
    February 21, 2015 - 10:29 am | Permalink

    This is really hard! Cheers for them both–Konwatsijayenni served her people both spiritually and politically (and who can’t like someone named “Someone Lends Her a Flower”?); but someone who wants to be buried where he can still be part of a community and have the rain fall on his grave? (And then gets his body chopped up and put in shrines, which are presumably indoors.)

  88. Verdery's Gravatar Verdery
    February 21, 2015 - 10:30 am | Permalink

    Just voted for Swithun. Supporting the underdog.

  89. Carol Virginia's Gravatar Carol Virginia
    February 21, 2015 - 10:33 am | Permalink

    I made my decision for “Winchester Cathedral” believing it would be a hopeless cause against a (beautiful) NATIVE AMERICAN FEMALE. So far, the comments have thrilled me! My Dad loved to call us “old Swamp Yankees” for loving things American, the Founding Fathers, Religious Freedom, Human Rights, Opportunity, and earlier, the country Church, broken eggs, broken hearts, miracles, rain, I have hope now and the SEC didn’t set it up! (+ Thanks to our Vets.) Go Saint Swithun! “Start Ringing Your Bells”.

  90. Phil Matthews's Gravatar Phil Matthews
    February 21, 2015 - 10:34 am | Permalink

    Konwatstjayenni’s life was admirable but a Loyalist? Swithum on the other hand was out in the wild, in tiuch with nature and got the King to give up 10 per cent of his lands. To expand the word Christ in the Country side. He is an inspiration!


    PS. As a native Californian we need him to bring rain too. Problem is it never rains in Juky here.

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 6:03 pm | Permalink

      I suppose it is a cross-border difference, but I cannot understand the use of “but” in the first sentence.

      • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
        February 21, 2015 - 6:59 pm | Permalink

        I can’t find this first sentence you refer to (maybe the page has since been edited). I couldn’t find any unusual use of the word (which appears 80 times so far).

        • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
          February 21, 2015 - 10:28 pm | Permalink

          “admirable but a Loyalist,” implies that those who did not opt to become a part of the new republic – and those of us descended from them – somehow have a mark against our “admirability”

  91. Katherine Grimes's Gravatar Katherine Grimes
    February 21, 2015 - 10:40 am | Permalink

    I agree that the native people of this continent might have been better under British rule, but I voted for Swithin because he could mend broken eggs! As a keeper of chickens and the mother of children who failed just this morning at the egg challenge (cushion an egg in padding and a cup, then drop it to see if it won’t break), I am amused by Swithin.

  92. Jen E. Ochsner's Gravatar Jen E. Ochsner
    February 21, 2015 - 10:41 am | Permalink

    My mother’s family were loyalists who received land in New Brunswick…….their farms taught us city kids about haying with horse drawn wagon, gathering eggs , bringing in the cows, fetching water from a spring ……happy memories. Also, I live in Onondaga County, home of the Onondaga Nation……have known the history of Molly Brant and her work among the Iroquois. Guess she is a “local gal” to me, so my vote goes to our Molly Brant!

  93. Elizabeth's Gravatar Elizabeth
    February 21, 2015 - 10:56 am | Permalink

    The real hair shirts and sackcloth of Lent is these terrible choices forced upon us by the Lent Madness crew! Aethelwald and Swithin are pals of mine from studying way too much British lit in college, but I have to go with Molly Brant for her respect of the Native traditions in her mission work.

  94. jeff's Gravatar jeff
    February 21, 2015 - 10:56 am | Permalink

    Californians, we need the rain! Vote for Swithun!

  95. John Hunter's Gravatar John Hunter
    February 21, 2015 - 10:57 am | Permalink

    Here in Forks, WA, we have an Episcopal Mission named for Saint Swithin, the only Saint Swithin’s congregation in the US. We are rallying the residents of our little rainy town to vote for Swithin and check out Lent Madnness.

  96. Cheryle's Gravatar Cheryle
    February 21, 2015 - 11:01 am | Permalink

    I almost voted for Molly because woman, peacemaker – and her care for native traditions while bringing Christianity to her people. However, I have long admired Swithun for his gentle nature, his piety, and his lack of pomposity. So while we should all follow Molly’s model and strive for peace (despite her backing the wrong side), I personally need to more closely follow the example of Swithun, and have cast my vote for him.

    After coasting to victory on Thursday with Brendan, it appears that today – as yesterday – I will taste the bitter dregs of defeat. Ah, me.

  97. Tom Van Brunt's Gravatar Tom Van Brunt
    February 21, 2015 - 11:02 am | Permalink

    Am I seeing a trend? More recent saints preferred over older ones. St. Teresa surely is a major person in Christian history. Do people not know her? Have people not read her works?

    • Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
      February 21, 2015 - 12:11 pm | Permalink

      Yes Tom- Saint Teresa is SO major that she is also a Doctor of the Church. Her writings did much to develop our understanding of the faith. I suspect that many voters are not aware of her relevance.

  98. Barbara from St. Barnabas's Gravatar Barbara from St. Barnabas
    February 21, 2015 - 11:03 am | Permalink

    I vote for Saint Swithun! I enjoyed reading about his humble wish to be buried where people & raindrops would fall upon his grave. He fixed broken eggs & swayed the weather. However, I admired his ability to fix churches the most! Here’s a blurb from

    “The Golden Legend, a medieval book of saints’ stories”

    And if any church fell down, or was in decay, S. Swithin would anon amend it at his own cost. Or if any church were not hallowed, he would go thither afoot and hallow it. For he loved no pride, ne to ride on gay horses, ne to be praised ne flattered of the people…

  99. February 21, 2015 - 11:03 am | Permalink

    Spelling: in the 10th century, or in the 18th for that matter, English did not have official spellings. You can spell Swithun/Swithin however you like, you can’t be wrong if the reader interprets to sound ok. ‘Correct’ spelling is probably a French/Latin thing invented by school masters. Doesn’t solve the ‘vote for the more recent so more real saint’, so I break my string today and support poor Swithun. May it help CA, and also perhaps diminish the downpours in Swithin’s home country.

  100. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Lucy Porter
    February 21, 2015 - 11:09 am | Permalink

    St. Swithun (Swithin) for me. As a clergy who can’t drive due to a visual problem, I am very touched by his traveling around his territory on foot as I used to do when visiting my shut-ins. Also, my father’s home town was Winchester, VA. Also, I come from a long line of American patriots, some of them pacifists.

  101. Phil Kober's Gravatar Phil Kober
    February 21, 2015 - 11:12 am | Permalink

    I have relatives who were Tories and fled to Nova Scotia during the Revolutionary War. There are other relatives who fought on the side of the Americans. Many who stayed here, even after the war, were NOT so sure about breaking away from England. However, we are no allies of the British! And we are allies of Canada as well ….. And as far as slavery, slavery was not abolished even in England until 1807! We were much later (1865). The first slaves were brought to this country in 1620. Washington and Jefferson were slaveholders — although both renounced the institution before they died! Washington indeed technically freed his slaves per Martha’s wishes before she died, but invited them to stay at Mount Vernon as they would be safer there (they were always in danger of being made slaves again if they moved about the countryside)! Patrick Henry was a slaveholder! And many other Patriots as well. Fractured history can be amusing, but we need to keep things in perspective. We just plain should not judge Molly Brant or anyone else from that era by modern standards. I voted for Molly Brant as a native American who worked for peace in the Iroquois Nation, something that was an exceedingly difficult task.

    • Phil Kober's Gravatar Phil Kober
      February 21, 2015 - 11:13 am | Permalink

      That should be “now allies of the British”! Sorry for the typo!

      • Phillip's Gravatar Phillip
        February 21, 2015 - 5:54 pm | Permalink

        I appreciate your response on these points, Phil. Fair enough, but I wouldn’t vote for Washington, Jefferson, or Patrick Henry for Lent Madness either.

        I agree that the question of whether it is fair to judge people using the standards of our time is a very important one. But it is crucial to remember the saintly witness of people (including members of Native American tribes) who were critical of slavery at the time.

        In fact, we can find prominent critics of slavery within European Christianity as early as 1515 (Bartolomé de las Casas would make an excellent Lent Madness candidate, incidentally).

  102. David's Gravatar David
    February 21, 2015 - 11:13 am | Permalink

    Speaking as a resident of Northern California, Saint Swithun had my vote at “relief of drought.”

  103. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Lucy Porter
    February 21, 2015 - 11:13 am | Permalink

    I can’t believe St. Theresa of Avila is out of the contest! She has been so important to me that there are very few who could top her, in my opinion.

    • Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
      February 21, 2015 - 12:04 pm | Permalink

      Lucy; As I commented yesterday, the LM crowd does tent to favor the ‘underdog’ Saints. I favored/voted for Teresa as I took her as my Confirmation Saint’s name. Oh well, I’m sure Teresa is taking the loss in good stride.

    • Carol Townsend's Gravatar Carol Townsend
      February 21, 2015 - 5:20 pm | Permalink

      Besides…when (not if) Teresa wins Lent Madness, then she’ll be retired from the running. The longer she stays in the brackets, the more chances people get to learn about her!

      OK, so that’s reaching for a “bright side” to losing, but still… ?

  104. John Colón's Gravatar John Colón
    February 21, 2015 - 11:17 am | Permalink

    My first Lent Madness. I am so loving this. I voted for…this descendent of the indigenous Tainos of Borinquen will keep it to myself.

  105. Mollie Turner's Gravatar Mollie Turner
    February 21, 2015 - 11:20 am | Permalink

    Despite my name (which was originally spelled with a “y”), and over my husband’s initial inclination, we have decided to vote for Swithin–again, a spelling preference. We’ve both spoken of “St. Swithin’s in the Swamp” too many times in our careers!

    So, how is it possible to vote more than once LEGALLY from the same location?? Love to know that technique to avoid having to arm-wrestle for the voting button!

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 6:09 pm | Permalink

      Actually, Mollie is the spelling used in the calendar! (Unless it’s different down there: actually, before now I never knew ECUSA commemorates her too – from the comments, it sounds like many wish it didn’t!)

    • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
      February 21, 2015 - 7:05 pm | Permalink

      Clearing your browser history or using a different browser might work in cases of two people sharing one computer. Just don’t vote 300 times . . .

  106. February 21, 2015 - 11:23 am | Permalink

    This selection proved difficult for me. Swithin was a kindly bishop, and I enjoyed visiting Winchester long ago. But my inner Tory leaned toward Molly because she accepted the reversals of life without comproming her faith.

  107. February 21, 2015 - 11:23 am | Permalink

    St Swithin send us some rain here in California. You seem like a nice guy. Mollly Brant what a peace maker you are. Got to go with the lady today.

  108. Mary's Gravatar Mary
    February 21, 2015 - 11:24 am | Permalink

    Had to vote for Swithin, and our mission church in Forks, WA! Go St Swithin!

  109. Mary W. Cox's Gravatar Mary W. Cox
    February 21, 2015 - 11:35 am | Permalink

    Between her own tribe
    and the outsiders’ new Way,
    Molly was a bridge.

  110. Diane Norton's Gravatar Diane Norton
    February 21, 2015 - 11:40 am | Permalink

    I am going English this time. Molly seems to be doing fine without me.

  111. Sherri's Gravatar Sherri
    February 21, 2015 - 11:42 am | Permalink

    I really wanted to vote for Molly, but as a keeper of chickens I have broken enough eggs that I want to stay on Swithin’s good side.

  112. Martha Casey's Gravatar Martha Casey
    February 21, 2015 - 11:43 am | Permalink

    I love the fact we’ve already seen 2 Native Americans. My vote goes to Molly today.

  113. February 21, 2015 - 11:45 am | Permalink

    I voted for Molly. Don’t know why. St Swithun just seemed too much of leaning on other money and too little facts about him to justify even his St.hood. Mending a broken egg is nice, but what did he do as the miraculous to justify his sainthood.

  114. February 21, 2015 - 11:47 am | Permalink

    Can’t bring politics into it: my Cherokee relatives fought for the British because the pushy white settlers were usurping their land. My other relatives were the pushy white settlers. I voted for Molly because anyone who had nine children and had time and strength to do anything else at all had to have been a saint.

  115. Filon's Gravatar Filon
    February 21, 2015 - 11:47 am | Permalink

    Ruby is correct in noting the women were often the leaders of the Iroquois nations. They continued to jockey for existence between the competing Europeans well into the 19th century. Even today the US officially sanctions the Iroquois Nation as a separate country in international Lacrosse competition. Now living in CA doesn’t mean I can wish the end of drought by means of the winter blizzards that are crippling the Northeast.

  116. Pat's Gravatar Pat
    February 21, 2015 - 11:48 am | Permalink

    My vote goes to Swithin even thought Molly’s life and work was likely more difficult and complicated…..remarkable even, but that Swithin walked barefoot and wanted to be buried in the earth where the rain could fall on him is too great of an image. Too bad they dismembered his body to spread it around here and there, but I imagine with his kind spirit he’ll get over it.

    • Judy Batson's Gravatar Judy Batson
      February 21, 2015 - 12:35 pm | Permalink

      That part about wanting to be buried in the earth where the rain could fall on him *almost* swayed my vote. It is a powerful sentiment and metaphor, and I too was saddened to read that he was dug up, cut up and distributed to as a relic.

      Judy B

  117. Todd Lane's Gravatar Todd Lane
    February 21, 2015 - 11:49 am | Permalink

    Oddly enough, I have unwittingly sided with the minority in each “installment.”

    Categorical disagreement? Or, is it just the Englush Missal Anglocatholic in me?

  118. Pat's Gravatar Pat
    February 21, 2015 - 11:51 am | Permalink

    What does it mean: “your comment is waiting moderation” after posting a comment What moderation?

    • Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
      February 21, 2015 - 11:55 am | Permalink

      Pat, maybe your spelling is just being corrected 🙂 ?

      • Pat's Gravatar Pat
        February 21, 2015 - 12:13 pm | Permalink

        That is a real possibility since I couldn’t find a ‘ spell check’ option and I had to scroll back to check Swithin but unfortunately I scrolled back to someone else who got it wrong…..so it is Swithun, not Swithin….I probably should have voted for Molly. : )

        • Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
          February 21, 2015 - 2:25 pm | Permalink

          It can be spelled either way. English was not standardized back then.

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      February 21, 2015 - 12:28 pm | Permalink

      The first time you vote, the admin has to approve it. After that, you won’t see that message any longer.

    • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
      February 21, 2015 - 7:12 pm | Permalink

      It means that it is awaiting approval by Scott or Tim before it will appear. Some bloggers moderate all comments (due to trolls), some moderate comments from first time/newer/infrequent comment-makers, and some are brave and do not moderate any comments (and those are the ones where I rarely read any comments).

    • Frank Jacob's Gravatar Frank Jacob
      February 21, 2015 - 10:27 pm | Permalink

      Pat, I believe they check the posts to ensure there’s no vulgarity or other inappropriate language; just a guess.

  119. Margaret's Gravatar Margaret
    February 21, 2015 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    St. Swithun take note that I’m voting for you here in southern Oregon. Please end our drought too. Go ahead and send rain to California also. (Note how charitable a native Oregonian can be!) I also know some small town, small churches that needs some fixing. Charles (and John) Wesley would also appreciate your help in this matter.

  120. Christine Teresa's Gravatar Christine Teresa
    February 21, 2015 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    At first glance I thought St Swithun was competing with St Kateri Tekakwitha “Liliy of The Mohawks” b.1656 d, 1680, who was known for her virtue and chastity. I voted for the Bishop Swithun. I had trouble voting for a Loyalist who had 9 children without the sacrament of marriage.

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 6:13 pm | Permalink

      On the last point, that would not have been her choice.

  121. Marjorie Jodoin's Gravatar Marjorie Jodoin
    February 21, 2015 - 12:09 pm | Permalink

    This was tough. On my first visit to Winchester I stayed with the secretary to the Dean and spent much time in the Cathedral. I love St. Swithen. But I am impressed by Molly Brant for the role she was able to play both as a woman and a native american at that time in history. It’s quite remarkable, not in regards to her abilities, but in her acceptance by a male-dominated, anti-native culture.

  122. Gloria Rousseau's Gravatar Gloria Rousseau
    February 21, 2015 - 12:10 pm | Permalink

    May St Swithun rest in pieces all over the UK, and may California receive rain; despite my vote for Molly Brant. She put much effort into her mission while still alive….and while bearing children.

  123. Elaine Culver's Gravatar Elaine Culver
    February 21, 2015 - 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Molly Brant, daughter of a D.A.R. that I am.

  124. Judy Batson's Gravatar Judy Batson
    February 21, 2015 - 12:30 pm | Permalink

    As a first-timer in Lent Madness, I was devastated yesterday to see one of my all-time favorite saints, Theresa of Avila, get defeated. Fortunately I bounced back enough to return and voted today for Molly. She earned my vote for geographical reasons — though seemingly capricious, maybe as good as any — since I spent growing-up years in New York State where part of our 7th grade state history included learning about the Iroquois. Having 9 children in a common law marriage while spreading the Anglican message seemed perfectly subversive, and that held appeal! Further, she ended up in Canada, and that gave me another geographical reason to love her since my mother was Canadian, and I spent much time in New Denmark, New Brunswick while growing up. One geographical detail was not clear, however: Did she go to the Onondaga tribe or to what was then a place called Onondaga? (I lived in Onondaga County from age 8 to 19)

    Loved reading people’s messages and learning more. Last year, Lent Madness seemed a bit too “superficial,” but happily, this year I’m more grounded as my paean to geography attests!

    Blessings to all you saints here on earth and to those at rest in “our true native land with Thee”!


  125. February 21, 2015 - 12:31 pm | Permalink

    This is my first Lent Madness, & I’m enjoying it tremendously. My choice of St. Teresa wasn’t the majority’s choice, & it seems that today’s choice of St. Swithun is going down to defeat as well. I’m bemused [confused]? Lol….seems modern is trumping centuries of church history.

  126. Susan Brager's Gravatar Susan Brager
    February 21, 2015 - 12:46 pm | Permalink

    We belong to a little mission church in Forks, Washington that is St. Swithin’s. So our vote is for St. Swithun. We know a little about rain here. We get about 120 inches of rain a year. Go St. Swithin!

    • February 21, 2015 - 1:01 pm | Permalink

      We need to convince Bishop Rickel to encourage Big Evergreen to rise up to support Swithun.

      My guess is that most people, upon hearing there is a Forks, Washington, say, “Forks is a real place?” Yes, Forks existed long before silly vampire movies.

  127. Bruce Rockwell's Gravatar Bruce Rockwell
    February 21, 2015 - 12:49 pm | Permalink

    The link to vote was not operative. So I could not vote. But if I had been able to vote, much as I was moved by the story of Molly Brant, I would have voted to Swithin. I’ve referred to “St. Swithin’s by the Swamp” for so long, I just had to vote for him.

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      February 21, 2015 - 1:07 pm | Permalink

      You can vote at the top of this page, just before the comments begin.

  128. Frank Jacob's Gravatar Frank Jacob
    February 21, 2015 - 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Molly Brant was a truly remarkable woman; she got my vote–Loyalist or note! She appears to be a ball of fire. She took good care of her own family, her Native American family, and her British family. When she spoke, people listened; in Robert S. Grumet’s “Northeastern Indian Lives, 1632–1816,”it is said of her that “. . . one word from her is more taken notice of by the Five [Iroquois] Nations than a thousand from any white man without exception.” An amazing occurrence in that that time.

  129. Frank Jacob's Gravatar Frank Jacob
    February 21, 2015 - 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Molly Brant was a truly remarkable woman; she got my vote–Loyalist or note! She
    appears to be a ball of fire. She took good care of her own family, her Native American
    family, and her British family. When she spoke, people listened; in Robert S. Grumet’s
    “Northeastern Indian Lives, 1632–1816,”it is said of her that “. . . one word from her is
    more taken notice of by the Five [Iroquois] Nations than a thousand from any white man
    without exception.” An amazing occurrence in that that time.

  130. Jem Ansuy's Gravatar Jem Ansuy
    February 21, 2015 - 1:09 pm | Permalink

    The Oakerhater victory was one of sentimental sympathy for Indians (patronizing?)–since objective comparison is one of apples and oranges. Theresa’s legacy to history has been profound while Oakerhater is unknown outside Episcopalian circles (and not well known within them). If Brant likewise scores a victory, “lent madness” has become inane. Consort of Johnson, her legacy to “church” (or history) is non-existent.

    Those observations aside, the system wouldn’t let me vote today. Where one casts a vote appears the following: [poll id="110"]

    • Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
      February 21, 2015 - 2:23 pm | Permalink

      You can’t vote in the email – you have to go to http://www.lentmadness.org

    • February 21, 2015 - 3:36 pm | Permalink

      My sentiments as well 🙂

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 22, 2015 - 8:39 am | Permalink

      Oakerhater’s victory was not one of “sentimental sympathy”, but of recognition of a great man of God who served the Gospel mightily. And as for the apples and oranges, that has always been a feature of Lent Madness. The point is not to match up similar saints, but to make the less familiar saints known. You said “Teresa’s legacy to history has been profound while Oakerhater is unknown outside Episcopalian circles (and not well known within them)”. You are correct. But should the Bracket contain only the names of well known saints? That would defeat one of the purposes of Lent Madness, which is to teach us about the saints, famous and obscure. Also, if fame is the required proof of sainthood, then why do we celebrate All Saints Day, which specifically honors all those, known and unknown, who have given their all for Christ?

  131. Ginny Rodriguez's Gravatar Ginny Rodriguez
    February 21, 2015 - 1:28 pm | Permalink

    The love and service to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is the common focus of all the saints not only in the chaos of Lent Madness, but in all times and in all places. In spite of the history and cultural context of various saints, we, participants in LM, get to choose the “The Saint of the Day”. Oh Joy! Oh torture!
    So. Today I choose St. Swithun with a prayer for the end of the drought in California and a prayer for the end of the snow in the East. Amen.

  132. February 21, 2015 - 1:35 pm | Permalink

    Well, I love the idea of St. Swithun and the relief of drought, but, since I typically try to go to England in July, I prefer no rain! Molly it is for me….

  133. Cindy Curry's Gravatar Cindy Curry
    February 21, 2015 - 1:37 pm | Permalink

    How great to see our Native American brother & sister honored in the brackets! Also, the pairing of ‘traditional’ & ‘modern’ folks provides the opportunity to think/pray beyond the differences to the commonalities breathed into their lives by the Spirit & shown forth in their obedience, faithfulness, & compassion. Tim & Scott — Thanks for the inspired fun of Lent Madness!!!

  134. Glenis Elliott's Gravatar Glenis Elliott
    February 21, 2015 - 2:02 pm | Permalink

    The SEC just loves to make this as difficult as possible!!!! Once again two great choices. It is amazing to me that there is so much to learn about so many inspiring people. Tim & Scott really help make Lent a fun experience along with the serious side.

  135. Dave Miklos's Gravatar Dave Miklos
    February 21, 2015 - 2:09 pm | Permalink

    St. Swithun was so influential and revered he was buried in several places! Everyone wanted a “piece” of the action! GO ST. SWITHUN

  136. Rebecca's Gravatar Rebecca
    February 21, 2015 - 2:24 pm | Permalink

    A woman who was a leader of her tribe and in the church, who worked for peace and understanding between peoples and religions? Molly definitely gets my vote.

  137. Bonny's Gravatar Bonny
    February 21, 2015 - 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Swithun sounds like a peaceful guy, simple and literally down to earth, looking toward the sky and treasuring the rain drops. That sounds like peace-making on a transcendental level. We don’t know much about him; he was too humble to make news. This is how I imagine him, even though he may have been quite a firebrand in his leadership role. I prefer to think of the solid ground and the cool rain. Cast a quiet vote for Swithun.

  138. Judy C's Gravatar Judy C
    February 21, 2015 - 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Perhaps we should ask St. Swithun to address the weather in the Northeast US

  139. Anne Monahan's Gravatar Anne Monahan
    February 21, 2015 - 2:57 pm | Permalink

    I am not able to vote today. Instead of listing candidate(Swithun and Brant)s and providing a vote button I get (poll id=”110″).
    Is the fix in?

    • February 21, 2015 - 3:36 pm | Permalink

      You must go to the website to vote.

      • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
        February 21, 2015 - 7:21 pm | Permalink

        Maybe the reminder that one needs to actually visit lentmadness.org in order to vote could be reiterated in a prominent font size and weight in the next update from the Supreme Executive Council of Lent Madness, since a number of people are confused about where the polling place is located. By putting the reminder in large and thick lettering it might help it to be read, marked, learned, and inwardly digested by the would-be voters of Lent Madness.

  140. February 21, 2015 - 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Voted for Molly for many reasons. The 1997 biography of her, Molly Brant: A Legacy of Her Own, describes the subtlety of her actions and the grace with which she guided her families. (Sadly, this resource is not included in the Wikipedia article about her.) The picture it paints is nothing less than what a life of faith looks like.
    Also, she comes from a very interesting neighborhood. Within 10 miles of her homestead you will find the Shrine of the North American Martyrs (Jesuits) at Auriesville, NY, and the birthplace of St. Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Native American baptized in North America. Auriesville features a remarkable basilica, built as a “circus” church with 360 degree seating and a three decker “Wedding cake” altar construction.
    Since her canonization, the Shrine to Kateri at Fonda, NY, has been nicely restored, and includes a surprisingly interesting little basement museum. It is worth the short drive to see the site of the long house village in which she lived.

    We have worshipped many times at the Johnson “family” church, St. John’s in Johnstown, NY, founded by Molly Brant’s “consort,” William Johnson.

  141. February 21, 2015 - 3:07 pm | Permalink

    The first Episcopal mission in Wisconsin was among the Oneida (and still exists today as Church of the Holy Apostles, Oneida in the Diocese of Fond du Lac), so today I had to go with their Six Nations cousin Molly Brant.

  142. Danielle Clark's Gravatar Danielle Clark
    February 21, 2015 - 3:35 pm | Permalink

    I’m surprised at all the anti-British sentiment expressed by people who declare their vote went to St Swithun, another loyal Brit. Did I miss the memo that the UK and the USA are enemies, still? Amused at our reasoning in making our choices.

    • Paul Forget's Gravatar Paul Forget
      February 21, 2015 - 3:59 pm | Permalink

      I agree. I am surprised too.

    • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
      February 21, 2015 - 6:23 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Danielle. As a Canadian who has never been made to feel like I’m “intruding” on LM, I have been saddened by the ugly-Americanism that this pairing has brought out of the woodwork, as if supporting the American Revolution were some kind of Christian virtue. I can report that at the Society of Catholic Priests provincial conference in Toronto last fall, the Canadian BCP (1959) was used for the offices, and the Queen was duly prayed for by all officiants, whether Canadian or American, so I think it’s all water under the bridge!

      It may be worth noting that Mohawk are less likely to identify as Canadian compared to some First Nations. For example, they tend not to vote in Canadian elections so as not to get mixed up in the affairs of what they see as another nation. They have tended to look to the Crown as their treaty partner, and given the ups and downs of the treatment they have received at the hands of various settler governments-of-the-day, I can hardly blame them.

      There are two “chapels royal” outside the British Isles and both are on Mohawk territories within the borders of the province of Ontario. I was privileged to attend the Mass celebrated by National Indigenous Bishop Mark MacDonald for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee at the chapel royal in Oshweken, Six Nations. (The Six Nations reserve even has an Orange Lodge, which is a bit much even for me!)

      • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
        February 21, 2015 - 6:45 pm | Permalink

        So many American Christians seem to regard the Revolution as some sort of Holy War fought between the True Believers (Patriots) and the Infidels (Loyalists). The fact is, there were devout, committed Christians on both sides of the conflict (as well as Deists, Jews, Atheists, Native Traditionalists, etc.). To hold Molly’s Loyalism against her is to have a very narrow attitude.

        • Linda Brown's Gravatar Linda Brown
          February 21, 2015 - 10:01 pm | Permalink

          It is not Molly’s Loyalism that bothers me, but her slaveholding. Even in the context of her time, this is not the peace-loving, faith-building, people-supporting witness one might hope for.

          • Geoff McLarney's Gravatar Geoff McLarney
            February 21, 2015 - 11:35 pm | Permalink

            Her slaveholding is indeed disappointing, and I admit it was news to me. So often our saints are not paragons of exemplary Christian perfection but reminders that God works through even the most broken of clay jars.

    • Claire's Gravatar Claire
      February 21, 2015 - 6:54 pm | Permalink

      I also agree with you, Danielle. This is unfortunate and quite surprising. I am a Canadian with British roots, but that is not the main reason I voted for Molly. My vote was because a) she is a woman, b) she worked towards peace, and c) she did not deny her native roots. Saint Swithun’s thing about the rain leans too far into superstition for me.

  143. Robin's Gravatar Robin
    February 21, 2015 - 3:50 pm | Permalink

    I absolutely had to vote for St. Swithun, because at one time I served as chaplain at Forks Community Hospital in Forks, WA – supposed site of the Twilight novels, but also one of the rainiest communities in the continental US and the location of a real St. Swithin’s Episcopal Church (different spelling, same saint).

  144. Lenny's Gravatar Lenny
    February 21, 2015 - 4:03 pm | Permalink

    The way the weather’s been lately, my choice is Swithun! Pray for us frozen chosen!

  145. February 21, 2015 - 4:23 pm | Permalink

    St. Swithun, in part because I learned about him from the Rt. Rev. Charles Longest, but also because we definitely need help in the current winter weather, and most importantly, because my hens – Frances, Faith, Felicity, Fiona, and Fredell – told me to vote for Swithun!

  146. SharronBearly's Gravatar SharronBearly
    February 21, 2015 - 4:35 pm | Permalink

    it won’t let me vote….dI want to vote for St Swithun.

  147. SharronBearly's Gravatar SharronBearly
    February 21, 2015 - 4:38 pm | Permalink

    it won’t let me vote….it said “poll 110” dI want to vote for St Swithun.

    • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
      February 21, 2015 - 7:27 pm | Permalink

      Are you trying to vote via email? If so . . . sorry, you can’t do that. To vote you need to go to LentMadness.org and find the post with the biographies of Swithun and Molly, click the “more” button, and then after reading the full post, locate the voting buttons (right above the first comment) and VOTE.

  148. Linda Maloney's Gravatar Linda Maloney
    February 21, 2015 - 4:45 pm | Permalink

    Go, Swithun! We so desperately need rain in California that I can’t resist voting for a guy who ends droughts!

  149. Maria K.'s Gravatar Maria K.
    February 21, 2015 - 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Voting for Molly due to her role in the history of my locality . And to remind myself that politics may divide, but in Christ we are One.

  150. Geoffrey Pratt's Gravatar Geoffrey Pratt
    February 21, 2015 - 5:09 pm | Permalink

    Molly Brant is buried at St. Paul’s Church in Kingston, Ontaario and has a large memorial plaque in St. George’s Anglican Cathedral. Having been born in England and now living amongst loyal descendants of Loyalists, I vote for Molly and invite all Swithinites to visit Kingston when the weather changes!

  151. Stephanie Bradbury's Gravatar Stephanie Bradbury
    February 21, 2015 - 5:17 pm | Permalink

    St. Swithiun fell down on the job here in the Northeast – the weather has been awful! Surely knowing the vote was coming up he could have buttered up his constituents. Molly Brant it is!

  152. BN Marion's Gravatar BN Marion
    February 21, 2015 - 5:17 pm | Permalink

    St. Swithun all the way! We all talk about the weather, but as a saint he can actually do something about it.

    And, the siege at Yorktown ended in October 1781, not 1783. That was the year for the Treaty of Paris’ ratification.

  153. Dot Hospador's Gravatar Dot Hospador
    February 21, 2015 - 5:26 pm | Permalink

    Voted for Swithun. (I had even mentioned St. Swithun’s in the Swamp in a sermon.) Molly just didn’t do it for me.

  154. Mary Reddick's Gravatar Mary Reddick
    February 21, 2015 - 5:31 pm | Permalink

    I love the learning and excitment of Lent Madness! …even when “my” person does not win. I am frustrated however that I am not on the email notification list no matter how many times I sign up to be. That does not deter me from going to the website…it does leave me wondering however.

    • Miss J.'s Gravatar Miss J.
      February 21, 2015 - 7:30 pm | Permalink

      Does you email service have a junk mail, bulk mail, or spam mail folder?
      If yes, have you checked it lately?

  155. Millie Ericson's Gravatar Millie Ericson
    February 21, 2015 - 5:36 pm | Permalink

    Swithun, because who can resist that name, even though I know I’m going with the looser today!

  156. Catherine Schiesz's Gravatar Catherine Schiesz
    February 21, 2015 - 5:45 pm | Permalink

    Swithun – they need rain on the west coast

  157. Pat's Gravatar Pat
    February 21, 2015 - 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Voting takes an extra click, easy enough once I got it.
    For me as first generation US’er it is native all the way.

  158. Sandra Mueller's Gravatar Sandra Mueller
    February 21, 2015 - 6:14 pm | Permalink

    We live in California and are wholeheartedly voting for Swithun in hopes of rain, and lots of it, soon, this very month of February. Please Dear Saint.

  159. Eileen Fisher's Gravatar Eileen Fisher
    February 21, 2015 - 6:20 pm | Permalink

    Allay your fears about dear St. Swithin having his body parts cut up. Get real. By that point he would have been skeletonized and/or all dried up. How much better to share and bury parts of his holy body than to display his bones inside glass containers as gruesome “relics” which the Papists are want to do. I think this relic fascination (check out Rome) is kind of creepy. I really don’t want to pray to a vertebral body. St. Swithun has always been a favorite of mine so he gets my vote. Too bad I’ve been picking all the losers so this does not bode well for St. Swithun.

  160. Fiona Haworth's Gravatar Fiona Haworth
    February 21, 2015 - 6:22 pm | Permalink

    In the week the bishops of the Church of England have published a pastoral letter urging people to engage in the electoral process I can’t cast my vote for Swithun who left others to advise the king on temporal msttrts.

  161. Kris Austin's Gravatar Kris Austin
    February 21, 2015 - 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Tough call. As a woman, I love that Molly was so influential at that point in history. On the other hand, I’m a Californian–and we desperately need rain. St. Swithun it is!

  162. Yvonne Crane's Gravatar Yvonne Crane
    February 21, 2015 - 6:34 pm | Permalink

    Another Californian for St Swithin/un. Please let seasonal rain fall on all areas of drought around the world.

  163. Emily's Gravatar Emily
    February 21, 2015 - 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Could you remind me what time polls close for the day, EST? Thank you!

  164. Elizabeth's Gravatar Elizabeth
    February 21, 2015 - 7:25 pm | Permalink

    Did your writer not consider the fact that St. Swithun is the patron saint of rutabaga growers significant.
    In honor of my father who always insisted upon rutabagas at Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners though no one else would eat them, I cast my vote for Swithun…..others can handle the weightier considerations.

  165. February 21, 2015 - 7:40 pm | Permalink

    St. S. got my vote! My life’s work is in Pastoral Care, sounds like he had it down in spades!

  166. Mark Willems's Gravatar Mark Willems
    February 21, 2015 - 7:57 pm | Permalink

    C’mon St. Swinthum – definitely the underdog here – but hope, like Lent Madness springs eternal (or at least annually.

  167. Marisa's Gravatar Marisa
    February 21, 2015 - 7:57 pm | Permalink

    Ok, I just read about both of today’s (Saturday) saints, but the vote box and two radio-type buttons did NOT appear at the bottom, so how can I vote? Is there a problem for everyone today?

  168. John Hunter's Gravatar John Hunter
    February 21, 2015 - 8:03 pm | Permalink

    When my wife was in seminary at EDS, I worked in the spider collections at the Museum of Comparative Zoology. My father reasoned that spiders had extra protection on St. Swithun’s day due to the folk lore that stepping on a spider would make it rain. Thus St. Swithun might be considered the patron of spiders and arachnologists.Not sure that this helps his case with others, but I still remember the great St. Swithun’s day parties with seminarians and zoology grad students!

  169. Marisa's Gravatar Marisa
    February 21, 2015 - 8:04 pm | Permalink

    Ignore the last questions from me, I must have had a senior moment, because I finally remembered how to get to the correct screen to vote!

  170. Debra Morgan's Gravatar Debra Morgan
    February 21, 2015 - 8:45 pm | Permalink

    As someone who owns a few hens, I am impressed by St. Swithun’s egg-repair miracle. But I have to go with Molly. She is pretty badass.

  171. February 21, 2015 - 8:53 pm | Permalink

    I was impressed by many of Molly’s achievements, but St. Swithin gets my vote today — this Papist has to vote for a humble bishop who focused on the poor. 🙂

    St. Swithin, pray for us and for your brother bishop Francis!

  172. Lane Johnson's Gravatar Lane Johnson
    February 21, 2015 - 9:17 pm | Permalink

    The first year I joined the Madness, I was careful to choose the “real” folks and not the ones who were more “theoretical.” Now, after several years, I go with my heart. I voted for St. Swithin; the weather could use the help.

  173. Mary W's Gravatar Mary W
    February 21, 2015 - 10:47 pm | Permalink

    I love the fact that Swithun wanted to be buried outside where ordinary people could walk over his grave. However, after much thought and reading through the comments, I’m going with Molly, despite the fact that she was a loyalist. Nine children, and she still had time to be a leader to the Iriquois, bring them christianity, and help keep the peace? That IS a miracle!

  174. Dorothy's Gravatar Dorothy
    February 21, 2015 - 11:36 pm | Permalink

    I voted for Molly Brant.. I loved that she could be a wise Christian leader among the Mohawks, & did not dismiss their native culture & spirituality. She was a extraordinary woman .

  175. Nana lyn's Gravatar Nana lyn
    February 22, 2015 - 12:45 am | Permalink

    Too difficult….was always fascinated by St Swithusnsince girlhood when I visited Winchester Cathedral…a man for the people….did not know of Molly…what a woman…..too difficuot to vote

  176. rich's Gravatar rich
    February 22, 2015 - 1:53 am | Permalink

    I am a total weather weenie, and I am going to vote for the patron saint of weather regardless of who he is up against. In this case it was not a difficult choice though, as the competition picked the wrong side. Sorry, but to the victor goes the vote. But hey, wait a minute, I have voted for an Englishman – I am so confused. I will stick with the weather!

  177. Brixham Beth's Gravatar Brixham Beth
    February 22, 2015 - 2:27 am | Permalink

    My histories say that St S wished to remain outside in the churchyard and NOT in a posh monument inside the cathedral, so when they dug him up and put him inside his comeback was 40 days of torrential rain and storms.
    He was a humble man and wanted to be with the rest of us, he’s the one for me.

  178. Michelle Jackson's Gravatar Michelle Jackson
    February 22, 2015 - 2:41 am | Permalink

    I must vote for Swithun. I’ve sung in all the places mentioned where parts of his remains remain. And I live in California…..maybe we could petition him to send us some of the snow you all back east have too much of.

  179. MegN's Gravatar MegN
    February 22, 2015 - 3:03 am | Permalink

    I’m voting for Molly Brant – I grew up in Upstate NY, and heard many tales about Joseph Brant, her brother, who had a great effect on history in the area. For Molly to have helped her brother Joseph in his path in life was also a credit to her. I had not heard that Iroquois lands extended into Ohio or Wisconsin, but I have visited places in Ontario Canada where they were moved after the U.S. Revolutionary War. Something new learned there.

  180. Conny Santana's Gravatar Conny Santana
    February 22, 2015 - 4:00 am | Permalink

    Whoa! Almost missed this one. Whew! Had to bote for dear Swithun with his rain and egg proclivity. couldnt bring myself to vote for the native American regardless of my love for thr Mohawk nation. As an American who can trace their heritage to the American Revolution I could not bring myself to vote for someone who worked to foil my ancestors.

  181. Rusty's Gravatar Rusty
    February 22, 2015 - 8:35 am | Permalink


  182. Susan Mattingly's Gravatar Susan Mattingly
    February 22, 2015 - 8:36 am | Permalink

    I am a first time Lent Madness participant and my bracket was blown on day 2, but I persist. St Swithun got my vote in memory of my mother who would quote the St Swithun’s rhyme every July 15. For farmers in Southern Maryland he was a very important guy !

  183. February 22, 2015 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    I could not vote because there were no boxes and only the letters pol i.d.110. How can I vote?

  184. Leslie Lewis's Gravatar Leslie Lewis
    February 22, 2015 - 10:27 am | Permalink

    It was not unusual for a woman of the Iroquois confederacy to be a leader of her people. It was (and is, to some extent) a matrilineal society. She was a smart, strong, brave woman. It’s a pity she led her people away from their faith into an alien culture that has done them no good at all. But she still would get my vote if the box would appear.

  185. John Eliot's Gravatar John Eliot
    February 22, 2015 - 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Where is the icon for registering a vote?

    • Julie BP's Gravatar Julie BP
      February 23, 2015 - 1:06 pm | Permalink

      Where is the icon for registering to vote? Confusing website

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