This year Melania's Name day is on 31st December 2017
There is also an alternative celebration date of 8th June for this Name day and represents different religious interpretations or different festival days for Saints
Symbols are often associated with Saints, it often helped in the middle ages when people were unable to read thus Melania has the following symbols associated
- A model of a church
- An open purse
Historically Famous Melanias
There were two St Melanias, known as 'the Elder' and 'the Younger' and they were related as grandmother and granddaughter. Melania the Elder took advantage of her very early widowhood to travel to Palestine and work with St Jerome in the 370s. She died in Jerusalem in 410. Her son obviously did not share his mother's spiritual ambitions for he insisted on marrying off his daughter, Melania the Younger, to a wealthy young cousin called Valerius Pinianus. Melania's piety and compassion for the poor was an irritation to her family - especially her husband - but after the death of their two babies, he came round to her point of view. They sold much of their property and freed their slaves, much to their family's horror. When Rome was invaded by the Visigoths, however, they were free to escape to North Africa where Melania had other estates. Later, she and her husband moved to Palestine; after his death, Melania founded a convent on the Mount of Olives where she copied manuscripts until she died in 439. Although she found her grandmother rather a formidable woman, Melania came to know St Paulinus of Nola, St Augustine of Hippo and St Jerome, and they in turn thought very highly of her and her husband. Theirs is one of the happier stories of a Christian couple in the early Church.