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On the day of the pagan feast of December 20th in 107 AD, St Ignatius was taken into the arena of the circus and he appealed to the people: "Men of Rome, you know I was sentenced to death not for any crime but for the sake of my God -- the One I desire to embrace and to whom we all seek. I am His wheat, to be ground by his teeth; and so I will be to the animals, as to Him, pure bread." Immediately thereafter, the lions were released.

A Cameo With The Head Of Roman Emperor Vespasian (First Century AD) Seen At Imperial Rome, An Exhibition At Kunsthal Rotterdam

There is a legend that after St Paul's return to Rome he preached at the court of the emperor Nero. By this his favorite concubine found faith in Jesus. For this he was tried. But though the grace of God was spared, in his own words, from the mouth of the lion (that is, from the wild beasts in the circus). But he was cast into prison. And after nine months of imprisonment he was beheaded by the sword as a Roman citizen.

The trade in gladiators was Empire-wide, and subjected to official supervision. Rome's military success produced a supply of soldier-prisoners who were redistributed for use in State mines or amphitheatres and for sale on the open market. For example, in the aftermath of the Jewish Revolt, the gladiator schools received an influx of Jews – those rejected for training would have been sent straight to the arenas as noxii (lit. "hurtful ones"). The best – the most robust – were sent to Rome.

Saint Mina turned down an offer to sacrifice to pagan gods, and received a most cruel torment, after which he was beheaded in 304. The body of the holy martyr was ordered to be burned. Christians gathered at night, from the fire, the surviving remnants of the martyr and put his name on the temple which had been built to honor the end of persecution in the Great Mines of suffering and death.

Printed Book of Hours (Use of Rome): fol. 102v, St. Sebastian | Cleveland Museum of Art

Bibliothèque nationale de France, Français 1537, detail of f. 65r [illustration for ‘Fille de roy es lyons approuvée’]. Chants royaux sur la Conception, couronnés au puy de Rouen de 1519 à 1528. 16th century

Agrikolay greeted Blasius, calling upon strange gods. The Saint called the pagan gods demons, was subjected to severe beating, and was taken to prison. Seven Christian women took the idols and drowned them in the deepest place. They stoically endured torture. Their bodies transformed becoming white as snow. Milk flowed from their wounds. One had two young sons who asked their mother how they could get to heaven. She told them to take care of the Bishop. The seven holy wives were beheaded.

Bibliothèque nationale de France, Département des manuscrits,...

sophia gnostic goddess | sophia pronounced sew fee ah is the gnostic goddess of wisdom gnostics ...

Being present at the death of the Holy Great Martyr Demetrius of Thessalonica, St Lupus dipped his clothes in his blood and took the ring from his hand. With his clothing, ring, and the name Demetrius, Luppus worked many miracles. He smashed the pagan idols for which he was persecuted by the heathen but the power of God was preserved intact. Holy Luppus voluntarily surrendered himself into the hands of torturers, and by order of Emperor Maximian Galerius was beheaded by the sword († after 30...

St. Mark, in anticipation of his end, hastened to leave behind a successor - Bishop Ananias and three elders. Soon after, pagans attacked the Apostle during a service, beat him, dragged him through the streets, and threw him into prison. At night, the Savior appeared to him and inspired him. The next morning a crowd of pagans again accosted him with the intent of taking him to be judged. But on the way, The Evangelist died with the words: "Into Thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit."

The spiritual power emanating from the Apostle Peter was so strong that even his shadow moved to those lying on the street sick and healed them. This message was written shortly before the martyrdom of the Apostle Peter: "I know that soon I must leave off this my tabernacle (body), as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me." At the end of his life, the Apostle Peter went back to Rome where he was martyred in '67 by crucifixion upside down.

Arch of Titus which depicts the aftermath of the Destruction of the Second Temple.

The Martyr Simeon: After the murder of the Apostle James, the first bishop of Jerusalem, the Christians chose in his place the Apostle Simon. During the reign of Emperor Trajan (98 - 117) the Roman governor told Atticus that Saint Simeon came from the line of King David (the Romans destroyed all descendants of King David), and professed the Christian faith. The pagans arrested St. Simeon, who at that time was already a hundred year old man, and after much suffering he was crucified on the cr...

St. Genesius of Arles - But Genesius was also a catechumen preparing for baptism. When on a certain day he found himself called upon to begin transcribing the proclamation of an imperial edict mandating the persecution of Christians, Genesius could not bring himself to record the offensive words against his faith. Rising from his seat, he hurled down his wax tablet before the judge and immediately resigned.

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Martyrdom St. John---St.Cyprian of Carthage----St.Apollonia. France c. 1475-80. Maitre Francois. Hague 10A11 KB

Ad Imaginem Dei: St. Agatha, My Newest Patron

Tiberius Julius Caesar Augustus (the Emperor Tiberius 42 BC - 37 AD; emperor 14-37 AD) Roman, ca. 14 AD. Parian marble

One panel of the Roman Lod Mosaic (circa 4th century AD), which depicts animals, hunting and maritime activity