St Martin of ToursPoole
c. 316 – 397
 
 
Martin was a Roman cavalry soldier in France in the mid 4th century.
 
One rainy night he met a beggar at the walls of Amiens. Cutting his robe in two he gave half to the beggar. In the night he had a dream of Jesus Christ wearing the half cloak. As a result he was baptized a Christian.
 
He served a further two years in the Army but refused to fight in a battle. He offered to lead his men into battle unarmed and his superiors were about to take him up on the offer. The night before the battle the enemy surrendered and Martin was discharged from the army.
 
He spent the rest of his life spreading the gospel in rural France, and eventually became Bishop of Tours.
 
Visitors to Southwest England can see the story of St Martin beautifully illustrated in 12th century frescoes on the north wall of the chancel of St Martin on the Wall Church in Wareham, Dorset.
 
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Google Map - St Martin of Tours, St Martin on the Wall Church