Almighty God, who didst give such courage and endurance to Blandina and her companions, that by their deaths many hearts were turned to thee; Grant that we, in accordance with their example, may also gladly endure all that is required of us as we witness to thee in our own day; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
PRAYER (contemporary language)
This commemoration appears in Lesser Feasts & Fasts 2018 with revised collects and lessons.
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BLANDINA AND HER COMPANIONS, THE MARTYRS OF LYONS
(2 JUNE 177)
At first, Christians were excluded from the public baths, the market place, and from social and public life. They were subject to attack when they appeared in public, and many Christian homes were vandalized. At this point the government became involved, and began to take Christians into custody for questioning. Some slaves from Christian households were tortured to obtain confessions, and were induced to say that Christians practiced cannibalism and incest. These charges were used to arouse the whole city against the Christians, particularly against Pothinus, the aged bishop of Lyons; Sanctus, a deacon; Attalus; Maturus, a recent convert; and Blandina, a slave. Pothinus was beaten and then released, to die of his wounds a few days later. Sanctus was tormented with red-hot irons. Blandina, tortured all day long, would say nothing except, "I am a Christian, and nothing vile is done among us." Finally, the survivors were put to death in the public arena.
by James Kiefer