Thursday, June 9, 2011

Primus and Felicianus, Martyrs

Today we commemorate Primus and Felicianus.According to Butler:

THESE two martyrs were brothers, and lived in Rome many years, mutually encouraging each other in the practice of all good works. They seemed to possess nothing but for the poor, and often spent both nights and days with the confessors in their dungeons, or at the places of their torments and execution. Some they encouraged to perseverance, others who had fallen they raised again, and they made themselves the servants of all in Christ that all might attain to salvation through him. Though their zeal was most remarkable, they had escaped the dangers of many bloody persecutions, and were grown old in the heroic exercises of virtue when it pleased God to crown their labours with a glorious martyrdom. The Pagans raised so great an outcry against them, that by a joint order of Dioclesian and Maximian Herculius they were both apprehended and put in chains. This must have happened in 286, soon after Maximian was associated in the empire, for the two emperors never seem to have met together in Rome after that year. These princes commanded them to be inhumanly scourged, and then sent them to Promotus at Nomentum, a town twelve miles from Rome, to be further chastised, as avowed enemies to the gods. This judge caused them to be cruelly tortured, first both together, afterwards separate from each other; and sought by various arts to cheat them into compliance, as by telling Primus that Felician had offered sacrifice. But the grace of God strengthened them, and they were at length both beheaded on the 9th of June.

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