Martyrs (d. 304)
+ Montanus and Maxima were a married couple. Montanus was a priest serving in Singidunum (present-day Belgrade, Serbia).
+ When the emperor Diocletian implemented a persecution of Christians in the region, the couple refused to submit and fled to Sirmium (west of Belgrade). They were subsequently arrested and tried before the Roman governor.
+ Faced with the choice of sacrificing to idols or death, Montanus proclaimed that offering gifts to the idols would be the same as denying Jesus as God and Lord of heaven and earth.
+ Because Montanus refused to deny his faith, the authorities pressured his wife, Maxima, to deny Christ. However, she also remained faithful, standing as a witness and symbol of so many faithful women of the early church.
+ Saints Montanus and Maxima were martyred in the year 304.
For prayer and reflection
“These are the ones who have survived the time of great distress;* they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.”—Revelation 7:14
On this day, we also remember Saint Basil “the Younger.” A hermit and acclaimed visionary in Constantinople, he died around the year 952.
O God, from whom faith draws perseverance and weakness strength, grant, through the example and prayers of the Martyrs Montanus and Maxima, that we may share in the Passion and Resurrection of your Only Begotten Son, so that with the Martyrs we may attain perfect joy in your presence. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Martyrs—For Several Martyrs)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.