January 8, 2019

Synaxarion of the Holy Martyrs Julian, Basilissa, Celsius and Anthony

Sts. Julian, Basilissa, Celsius and Anthony (Feast Day - January 8)


To Julian and Basilissa.
Many rewards Julian and Basilissa,
Are laid in store for you through the sword.

To Celcius and Anthony.
The head of Celcius is cut off by the sword,
Together with the head of Anthony.

To the Martyrs with Julian.
Men who truly reverence Christ came together,
And were delivered to death with one mind.

To the Wife of the Governor.
Longing for Christ inflicted the mother of Celsius,
Causing her to despise her husband, and torments.

Saint Julian lived during the reign of the emperor Diocletian (284-305) and the governor Marcian, and was from Antinoopolis which can be found in Egypt. He had persuaded his lawful wife, whose name was Basilissa, to live in prudence and virginity. Having had her tonsured a nun in a monastery, he became a monk in another one, and became an abbot over twelve thousand monks. Taken into custody by the governor, and not denying Christ, but instead he mocked the idols, he moved the governor to rage and anger. Thus the defiled one immediately sent his men, to burn down the monastery of the Saint together with the monks. Inside there were burned also all of the Bishops, and the rest of the clergy of the land, as many as had fled there. In this way they met their end by martyrdom.

As for Saint Julian he was spread out over the ground of the earth and beaten. After this he was bound tight with iron chains, and they broke his bones. Then an executioner who was blind in one eye, believed in Christ, and he was healed by the Martyr. For this he was beheaded, and received the crown of martyrdom. Celcius, the son of the governor, together with twenty soldiers, believed in Christ, because they saw the Saint raise someone from the dead by his prayers. Because of this the governor ordered, first, that his son Celsius be placed in prison. After this he was cast into a fiery cauldron full of boiling water. This was also done to the other seven sons of the governor who believed in Christ, along with the priest Anthony and Anastasios who was raised from the dead. Having all remained unharmed by the grace of Christ, many other Greeks believed in Christ, as well as the mother of Celcius, who was the wife of the governor.

All the believers in Christ stood before the governor, they prayed, and - O the miracle! - all the idols of the temple fell and were smashed to pieces, and the temple was swallowed up by the earth. Then the Greeks gathered together bundles of papyrus, and wetting them with oil, they tied together the wrists and ankles of the Saints. They then set aflame the papyrus, but divine grace kept the Saints unharmed and they were not burned. For this, Saints Julian and Celcius were dragged and scalped. The priest Anthony had his eyes removed with an iron hook. The mother of Celsius was suspended, then given over to the beasts to be devoured. Having remained unharmed by these torments, they were all finally beheaded. In this way the renowned ones received the crown of martyrdom. Their Synaxis is held in their most holy and martyric Temple which is near the Forum.