The exorcist Peter, sent to prison, under the Emperor Diocletian, converted his gaoler and all his family, and brought them to the priest Marcellinus who baptized them. The judge Serenus ordered them both to appear before him and they bore witness to Jesus Christ (Gospel). They were condemned to death and after atrocious torments, were beheaded, towards 303.

Possessing the first fruits of the Holy Ghost, they awaited with sighs the adoption of the children of God and their sufferings were in nowise compared with the glory which now shines forth in them (Epistle). Both saints are mentioned in the Canon of the Mass (second list. The Station of the Saturday on the Second Week of Lent is held in the church dedicated to them.

St. Erasmus, bishop in Syria, afterwards hermit in Lebanon, was cruelly tortured several times in Antioch and in Illyria under the Emperors Diocletian and Maximian. His legend tells that his entrails were wound round a windlass : he is therefore invoked for internal diseases, as one of the “fourteen auxiliary Saints”. He died in peace at Formiae in Campania. CONTINUE READING