Conversione di san Paolo Western Christianity celebrates today, January 25, the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle. A fervent zealot, Paul had spent his early life intensely persecuting Christians - having, in fact, participated in the stoning of Saint Stephen. On his way to the Syrian city of Damascus, where he was supposed to seek out, imprison, and possibly execute the many followers of Jesus present in the city, his life came however to a sudden turning point.

Now as he was going along and approaching Damascus, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” He asked, “Who are you, Lord?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But get up and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”

Acts 9:3–6, NRSV

It was this event that sparked Paul's sudden conversion to Christianity. Made blind by the flash of light, the Saint was led into the city by his companions; there, after his eyesight was restored in the name of Jesus by a Christan disciple named Ananias, Paul was finally baptized.
  "Conversion of Saint Paul", illumination from the manuscript "Breviary of Charles de Neufchâtel", ms. 0069, p. 384, before 1498, Bibliothèque Municipale, Besançon.
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