Today’s saints, Castus and Aemilius, teach us that not every Christian went cheerfully and quickly to martyrdom.
The early Church father, Saint Cyprian, bishop of Carthage, tells us most of what we know about the two men. During the persecution of the Roman emperor Decius, they were arrested for being Christians and were brutally tortured. Because of the pain, they gave in. They were released when they capitulated about their Christian faith.
Later, they were bitterly sorry for having renounced their faith in Christ and repented. Around the year 250, they were arrested again for the same reason. This time, they remained faithful, even when they were executed by being burned to death.
Saints Castus and Aemilius, help me to rely not on my strength, but on Christ’s.