Saturday, March 19, 2016

Holy Martyrs Claudius the Tribune, his Wife Hilaria, and their Sons Jason and Maurus

Sts. Claudius, Hilaria, Jason and Maurus (Feast Day - March 19)

Verses

For Claudius the Tribune
Claudius abandoned the sea of error,
Within the sea you cast aside error.

For Hilaria
Hilaria was beheaded by the sword,
Now she sees the most bright face of God.

For Jason and Maurus
Together the brothers were beheaded,
Brothers Maurus and Jason were of one mind.

The Holy Martyr Claudius was at first a pagan and a Roman tribune, to whom the Holy Martyrs Chrysanthos and Daria were sent after their arrest by the prefect Celerinus, in order to have them tortured. When he saw the Saints remained unharmed from their torments and not a wound appeared on their body, despite the fact that Chrysanthos was mercilessly beaten with thorny rods till the point his tormentors became exhausted and he afterwards rejoiced as if it was another being beaten; when he saw this wonder, being of sound mind he recognized that this was done by the power of God. For this reason he fell down at the feet of the Saint and straightway was baptized, together with his wife Hilaria, and his two sons Maurus and Jason, with all his servants and friends and soldiers under him and their friends.

When Emperor Numerian learned of this, he ordered that a stone be tied to the neck of Saint Claudius and that he be thrown into the sea. He also ordered all his soldiers to be tortured, and those who refused to deny Christ were to be beheaded in the theater. In this way Saint Claudius and his soldiers received the crown of martyrdom. The two sons voluntarily went to be martyred, and presenting themselves before the tyrant and confessing Christ, he had them beheaded, and they received the crown of martyrdom.

Nearby where the Saints were martyred there was a cave which the Christians cleaned out, and there they entombed the relics of the Saints. When Saint Hilaria received the relics of her sons, she entombed them in a separate place, and would often visit their tomb. Wherefore she was captured by the unbelievers, and being forcefully taken away because she was a Christian, she pleaded with the soldiers that were taking her away to give her a moment. Letting her go, therefore, she raised her hands to heaven and prayed, and while in prayer she delivered her soul into the hands of God. When the tormentors saw this miracle, they were astonished, and left that place (other sources say she was also beheaded). Two female servants of the Saint, learning of the death of their mistress, went and took her relics, and entombed her near her two sons.

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