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St. Januarius (Bishop)
and Companions

Martyrs

September 19

Januarius was bishop of Beneventum when Diocletian and Maximian were fiercely persecuting the Christians. For his profession of the Christian Faith, he was submitted in vain to the tortures of fire and of the rack by Timotheus, governor of Campania. Soon after, with Festus his deacon and Desiderius, a lector, he was dragged in chains ahead of the governor's chariot to Pozzuoli. The next day, he and his companions were thrown to the beasts, together with the deacons Sosius of Misenum and Proculus of Pozzuoli and the laymen Eutyches and Acutius. But when the beasts left them unharmed and nearly five thousand persons received faith in Christ, the governor was enraged and commanded the holy bishop and his companions to be beheaded. The Christians attended to their burial.

The body of Januarius was first placed at Beneventum, then in the monastery of Monte Vergine, and finally in the principal church of Naples, and is famous for many miracles. His blood is kept in a glass vial and, even in our day, when it is placed in sight of the head of the holy Martyr, it becomes liquid and bubbles in a remarkable way.



Taken from The Hours of the Divine Office in English and Latin, Vol. III: August to Advent (Collegeville, Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1963), pp. 1564-1565.


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