• Forty Holy Martyrs of Sebaste, Armenia (320). Martyr. (Traditional)
  • St. Marcarius (334). Bishop. (Historical)

THE FORTY MARTYRS were soldiers quartered at Sebaste, in Armenia, about the year 320. When their legion was ordered to offer sacrifice they separated themselves from the rest, and formed a company of martyrs. After they had been torn by scourges and iron hooks they were chained together, and led to a lingering death. It was a cruel winter, and they were condemned to lie naked on the icy surface of a pond in the open air till they were frozen to death. But they ran undismayed to the place of their combat, joyfully stripped off their garments, and with one voice besought God to keep their ranks unbroken. “Forty,” they cried, “we have come to combat; grant that forty may be crowned.” There were warm baths hard by, ready for any one amongst them who would deny Christ. The soldier who watched saw angels descending with thirty-nine crowns, and while he wondered at the deficiency in the number, one of the confessors lost heart, renounced his faith, and, crawling to the fire, died body and soul at the spot where he expected relief. But the soldier was inspired to confess Christ and take his place, and again the number of forty was complete. They remained steadfast while their limbs grew stiff and frozen, and died one by one. Among the Forty there was a young soldier who held out longest against the cold, and when the officers came to cart away the dead bodies they found him still breathing. They were moved with pity, and wanted to leave him alive, in the hope that he would still change his mind. But his mother stood by, and this valiant woman could not bear to see her son separated from the band of martyrs. She exhorted him to persevere, and lifted his frozen body into the cart. He was just able to make a sign of recognition, and was borne away, to be thrown into the flames with the dead bodies of his brethren.

Bf saints 03 10 blog

REFLECTION: All who live the life of grace are one in Christ. But besides this there are many special ties of religion, of community life, or at least of aspirations in prayer, and pious works. Thank God if He has bound you to others by these spiritual ties; remember the character you have to support, and pray that the bond which unites you here may last for eternity


CHRISTIANS IN ISRAEL. The Christians in the State of Israel are mainly Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox. Their largest community is in Nazareth. Most of them speak Arabic, and their customs are similar to those of their Arab neighbors. Numerous religious orders, predominantly Catholic, have monasteries and convents on sites venerated by Christian tradition, notably in Nazareth, the scene of the Annunciation; Ein Karem, birthplace of St. John the Baptist; the Jordan; Sea of Galilee; the Mount of the Beatitudes and the Transfiguration; Cana and Capernaum. Franciscans are the most prominent, having the Custody of the Holy Land assigned to them by the Holy See.

Modern Catholic Dictionary, Fr. John Hardon SJ (Get the real one at Eternal Life — don’t accept an abridged or edited version of this masterpiece!)


Enjoy daily meditations this lent from Fr. Richard Clarke, SJ. Short and powerful, written in 1880 for busy lay people to reap rewards through lent. (includes audio) Lent Day 26: The Fourth Sunday in Lent— Jesus Before Pilate.

March is St. Joseph

Daily devotionals on Saint Joseph: March 10th — St. Joseph’s Second Sorrow.

This article, MARCH 10, 2024 – FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT – THE FORTY MARTYRS OF SEBASTE. is a post from The Bellarmine Forum.
Do not repost the entire article without written permission. Reasonable excerpts may be reposted so long as it is linked to this page.

John B. Manos

John B. Manos, Esq. is an attorney and chemical engineer. He has a dog, Fyo, and likes photography, astronomy, and dusty old books published by Benziger Brothers. He is the President of the Bellarmine Forum.

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