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Laurence of Canterbury

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Born ''Laurentius'', nothing is known of the childhood of St. Laurence. His date of birth is not known. According to St. [[Bede]], Laurence was among the first [[missionary|missionaries]] to the Anglo-Saxons. He arrived in a party of [[missionary|missionaries]] with St. Augustine of Canterbury in 597, on the island of Thanet. Among their early [[conversion]]s to Christianity was King Ethelbert of Kent. After Augustine was consecrated bishop in Arles, Laurence was sent by Augustine to report to Pope [[Gregory the Great]] of their successes.
In 601, Laurence returned with Mellitus, who became [[Bishop]] of London, and others with a [[pallium]] for Augustine and a collection of religious objects. Augustine probably [[consecration of a bishop|consecrated]] Laurence bishop a short time before he died, about 604, and after which Laurence succeeded to the [[See]] of Canterbury. King Ethelbert died in 616 and was succeeded by his son Eadbald , who began a return of the populace to the heathen faith. This prompted many of the missionaries to flee to Gaul. Tradition relates that about 617-618 Laurence was among those who were giving up, but was visited by St. [[Apostle Peter|Peter]] in a vision. Peter berated Laurence and whipped him. The next day Laurence visited Eadbald and showed him the marks from the whipping, and thus effecting Eadbald's conversion to Christianity.
Laurence died on February 3, 619, and was buried with St. Augustine in St. Peter's Church that , which was later dedicated as the St. Augustine Abbey Church.
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