Skip to comments.Sept. 19: St. Januarius, Bishop & Martyr, and His Companions, Martyrs (Gueranger)
Posted on 09/19/2005 6:57:54 AM PDT by Pyro7480
Januarius is ever preaching the Gospel to every creature; for his miraculous blood perpetuates the testimony he bore to Christ. Let those who say who say they cannot believe unless they see, go to Naples; there they will behold the martyr's blood, when placed near his head which cut off sixteen hundred years ago, to liquefy and boil as at the moment it escaped from his sacred veins. No; miracles are not lacking in the Church at the present day. True, God cannot subject Himself to the fanciful requirements of those proud men, who would dictate to Him the conditions of the prodigies they must needs witness ere they will bow before His infinite Majesty. Nevertheless, His intervention in interrupting the laws of nature framed by Him and by Him alone to be suspended, has never yet failed the man of good faith in any period of history. At present there is less dearth than ever of such manifestations.
The following is the legend concerning St. Januarius and the sharers in his glorious martyrdom.
During the persecution of the Christians under Diocletian and Maximian, Januarius, bishop of Beneventum, was brought before Timothy, president of Campania, at Nola, for the profession of the Christian faith. There, his constancy was tried in various ways. He was cast into a burning furnace, but escaped unhurt, not even his garments or a hair of his head being injured by the flames. This enraged the president, who commanded the martyr's body to be so stretched that all his joints and nerves were displaced. Meanwhile, Festus his deacon, and Desiderius a lector, were seized, loaded with chains, and dragged, together with the bishop, before the president's chariot to Pozzuolo. There, they were cast into a dungeon, where they found the deacons Sosius of Misenum and Proculus of Pozzuolo, with Eutyches and Acutius, laymen all condemned to be thrown to wild beasts.
The following day, they were all exposed in the ampitheatre; but the beasts, forgetting their natural ferocity, crouched at the feet of Januarius. Timothy, attributing this to magical arts, condemned the martyrs of Christ to be beheaded; but as he was pronouncing the sentence, he was suddenly struck blind. However, at the prayer of Januarius, he soon recovered his sight; on acocunt of which miracle, about five thousand men embraced the faith. The ungrateful judge was in no way softened by the benefit conferred upon him; on the contrary, he was enraged by so many conversions; and, fearing the emperor's edicts, he ordered the holy bishop and his companions to be beheaded.
Eager to secure, each for itself, a patron before God among these holy martyrs, the neighbouring towns provided burial places for their bodies. In obedience to a warning from heaven, the Neapolitans took the body of Januarius, and placed it first at Beneventum, then in the monastery of Monte Vergine, and finally in the principal church at Naples, where it became illustrious for many miracles. One of the most remarkable of these was the extinction of a fiery eruption of Mount Vesuvius, when the terrible flames threatened with destruction not only the neighbourhood but even distant parts. Another remarkable miracle is seen even to the present day, namely: when the martyr's blood, which preserved congealed in a glass vial, is brought in presence of his head, it liquifies and boils up in a wonderful manner, as if it had been but recently shed.
O holy martyrs, and thou especially, O Januarius, the leader no less by thy courage than by thy pontifical dignity, your present glory increases our longing for heaven; your past combats animate us to fight the good fight; your continual miracles confirm us in the faith. Praise and gratitude are therefore due to you on this day of your triumph; and we pay this our debt in the joy of our hearts. In return, extend to us the protection, of which the fortunate cities placed under your powerful patronage are so justly proud. Defend those faithful towns against the assaults of the evil one. In compensation for the falling away of society at large, offer to Christ our King the growing faith of all who pay you honour.
Catholic ping! (Graphic painting of a martyrdom alert)
St. Januarius praying for Divine intervention during the plague.
The blood of St. Januarius.
Thanks! I had a feeling you would find something for this thread. ;-)
San Gennaro looks a little scary in this one. Although if I were standing over my own severed head (I assume in spiritual body) I might look a bit peeved . . .
Are there propers for St. Januarius in the Orthodox Church?
Here is the apolytikion and the Synaxarion for his feastday which in Orthodoxy we celebrate on April 21.
As a sharer of the ways and a successor to the throne of the Apostles, O inspired of God, thou foundest discipline to be a means of ascent to divine vision. Wherefore, having rightly divided the word of truth, thou didst also contest for the Faith even unto blood, O Hieromartyr Ianouarios. Intercede with Christ our God that our souls be saved.
These Martyrs contested for piety's sake in Campania of Italy, during the reign of Diocletian (284-305), when Timothy was Proconsul. Saint Januarius was the Bishop of Benevento in Campania; he was arrested and taken to Nola, where he was cast into a burning furnace, from which he came forth unharmed; at Puteoli, together with Proculus, Sosius, and Faustus the deacons, Desiderius, reader of the Church of Benevento, and Eurychius and Acutius, nobles from Puteoli, he was cast to wild beasts, which as they came near the Saints, fell affectionately at their feet. Finally they were all beheaded, about the year 305.
"Kontakion of St Januarius tone 4
The Master has granted thee to Naples, O Saint,/ as a precious treasure and fountain of healings;/ thou art a guardian and protector of the people,/ and dost avert the evils of Vesuvius' fire./ Hence we cry to thee with faith: Rejoice O Januarius, our Father and protector.
GREAT ! St. Januaruius ,such a special saint..miracles,miracles!
BTTT on the Optional Memorial of St. Januarius, September 19, 2005!
Do you know when that Kontakion was written? His greatest intercession concerning Vesuvius didn't take place until 1631. If it was written earlier than that, it would support a history of the Neapolitan people turning to him for centuries.
Sorry, I've no idea save that it is from an English site. The webmaster said it came from a falling apart old book belonging to a "Fr. Demetrius". Kontakia have changed multiple times over the centuries so I guess I would be surprised if it were older than 1631. On the other hand, it is definitely an Orthodox Kontakion and by 1631 Naples was firmly in the Roman camp so maybe it is older, perhaps pre-schism.
BTTT on the Optional Memorial of St. Januarius, September 19, 2006!
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