Daily Saints

അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) May 12th – St. Nereus, St. Achilleus & St. Pancras

അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) May 12th – St. Nereus, St. Achilleus & St. Pancras

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അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) May 12th – St. Nereus, St. Achilleus & St. Pancras
St. Nereus, St. Achilleus
So often we hear people or even ourselves excuse an action by saying
“I was only following orders.” But for Nereus and Achilleus this excuse
could not stand in the face of the cross.

Everything we know from authority about the two first- century martyrs comes from a testimony written by Pope St. Damasus
in the fourth century and inscribed on a memorial tablet that
commemorates their lives. But even this commentary comes 300 years after
they died.

Damasus tells us that Nereus and Achilleus were soldiers in the Roman army where they helped carry out the persecution
of Christians. They probably had nothing against Christians and didn’t
carry for the bloody slaughter they were commanded to perform, but they
obeyed these cruel orders out of fear of dying themselves. After all,
that was what soldiers have always been expected to do.

We are not told how they were converted, only that it was a “miracle
of faith.” After this miracle, they threw down their weapons and escaped
from their camp, discarding armor and arms as they went toward their
new life in Christ. As participants in the persecution they knew perhaps better than any other Christian what pain awaited them. Faith, however, had triumphed over fear of death and the victory of faith was the sweetest they had known.
We are told they were martyred but Damasus doesn’t mention how.
Later legend had it that they served Flavia Domitilla, the
great-niece of Emperor Domitian, and were exiled and executed with her
when she converted. This legend probably originated in the fact that the
martyrs were buried in what was later known as the cemetery of
Domitilla.

Prayer:
Saints Achilleus and Nereus, pray for those in the military and armed forces throughout the world that they may always see God as their authority and obey God’s orders first. Amen
St. Pancras
We have no reliable historical information about this martyr. Legend tells us he was born at the end of the third century and brought up by an uncle in Rome after the death of his parents. Both he and his uncle became Christians. Pancras was beheaded in 304 during Diocletian’s persecution. He was only 14 years old.

Pancras is especially venerated in England because Augustine of Canterbury dedicated his first church to Pancras and his relics were presented as a gift to the king of Northumberland. A district in London is named St. Pancras after him.
In His Footsteps:

What do you know about the faith of teenagers? Whatever age you are, check into your parish youth group or a youth service organization to find out more and perhaps join or help out.
Prayer:

St. Pancras, pray for all teenagers that their faith may be as strong as yours, strong enough to lead them through all the trials of their life.

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