Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Holy Martyrs Gordianus and Epimachus

Sts. Gordianus and Epimachus (Feast Days - October 31 and May 9)

Verses

October 31

To Gordianus.
Gordianus the Martyr sought glory,
And the Martyr beheld it through the sword.

To Epimachus.
With steadfast teeth Epimachus faces the sword,
Causing enemies to gnash their teeth like a sword.

May 9

To Gordianus.
Gordianus was not brought to the sword,
But he encouraged his soul towards the crown.

To Epimachus.
Epimachus the athlete was carried to the sword,
A divine fighter firm against error.

Saints Gordianus and Epimachus were from Rome and contested during the reign of Decius (249-251). Having boldly confessed Christ, they were arrested, and urged by the governor to deny Christ by sacrificing to idols, though they were not persuaded. After being tortured with various torments, they were beheaded, and received the crown of the contest.


The bodies of these two Saints were laid side by side in a crypt on the Via Latina, in the cemetery that bears their name. They are especially venerated in Germany and Italy. Relics of both Saints were owned by Kempten Abbey in Bavaria. In the Orthodox Church they are celebrated twice a year, on October 31 and May 9.


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