We will honour Michael
For his quest in God,
Challenging convention
Everywhere he trod.
When he reached Geneva
He was cast in gaol,
Sentenced, burned and damned, but
All to no avail.

Next we honour Faustus
For his reasoning mind,
Which - applied to scripture -
Insights there refined.
From his southern homeland
Europe he did roam,
Till the Polish Brethren
Gave him welcome home.

Now we honour Francis
For debating skill;
Who in land byond the trees
Is remembered still.
Faith to faith he travelled
On until he came,
Searching scripture's pages
To the simple name.

Praising you, our Father,
God in unity;
Honouring our Jesus
In humanity.
We who now acclaim these
Stars for work begun,
Also still proclaim in
Faith that God is one.

Andrew McKean Hill

Faustus Socinus (1539-1604) was an Italian who settled in Poland with the Polish Brethren whose successors became known as Socinians because of his influence among them. He argued that Jesus saved people, not by dying for them, but by setting an example for them to follow.

Francis David (1520-1579) lived and worked in Transylviania (the land beyond the trees) now in north-western Romania. Born a Catholic, he became a Lutheran, then a Calvinist, and eventually a Unitarian. Through debating skill, he carried many with him, including the Transylvanian ruler, John Sigismund. Following a change in ruler, he was sentenced to perpetual imprisonment and died in prison on 15 November 1579. The Hungarian-speaking Unitarian Church in Romania, of which David was the first bishop, is the oldest organised Unitarian church in the world. The simple name refers to the assertion that God is one as distinct from the complex three.

Return to Servetus index page