An Undocumented Saint?

The 1974 edition of The Lives of the Saints does not list a “St. Odrian”, or anyone with a similar version of that name. However, some online websites do refer incorrectly to an individual named Odrian as a Catholic Saint. For example, the website CatholicSaints.info describes a St. Odrian as a Bishop of Waterford in Ireland. The website states he was a former Abbot of a monastery at Meath. The site claims he befriended “St. Columba” (possibly a reference to St. Columban, born in 563) and accompanied that saint on a trip to Scotland. It notes he is remembered on October 27th, the day The Lives of the Saints (1974 edition) commemorates the Lay Sister, the Blessed Emilina born in 1115.

If St. Odrian existed as an historical figure (and not a mythical one), he evidently practiced the Catholic faith during a period when records proved sketchy. Online sources indicate he died in 563 at Iona Abbey in Scotland. This information suggests some inaccuracy exists, since St. Columban’s birth date would coincide with Odrian’s date of death.

Some history books refer to the Sixth Century as the “Dark Ages”. Ireland and the British Isles (including Scotland) would have experienced extensive warfare during St. Odrian’s lifetime. St. Columban died in 615. Many pagan tribes in the British Isle converted to Christianity during the 500s and 600s.