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Sunday, September 26, 2010

September 26, St. Cyprian and Justina, Mm, Orthodox saints

Many stories are told of Cyprian and the virgin Justina to show the powerlessness of the devil against Christians, who trusted in the might of the Cross. According to these old legends, Cyprian first practiced sorcery, but afterwards lived and practiced the science of the Cross, and so died a martyr. When he was pursuing the evil arts, a young man, who lusted after the Christian maiden Justina, came to him for a love-potion wherewith he might seduce her. Cyprian thereupon sought from the devil some knowledge as to how to accomplish this evil end, but became convinced that all his arts were wasted on any who truly worshipped Christ. Wherefore he became a true Christian believer. For this cause, he and the Virgin Justina were arrested together, beaten with blows and scourging, and cast into prison, if haply they might change their mind. Afterwards they were further tortured, and in the end beheaded, at Nicomedia, on September 26th, in the year 304. Their bodies were thrown out, and lay unburied for the space of six days, at the end of which time some sailors took them secretly by night on board a ship and carried them to Rome, where they are said to be buried hard by the baptistery in the Lateran Basilica.

O Lord, who never failest to look down in mercy on them on whom thou bestowest the succour of thy Saints : grant, we pray thee, that the intercession of the blessed Martyrs Cyprian and Justina, may evermore avail to comfort and defend us, Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


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