Saint Eleftherios and Saint Anthia
Saint Eleftherios was born in Greece between 140 and 145 AD.His father,an idolater,was a Roman and he died when Eleftherios was still young.His mother Anthia, was a Christian.She did her very best to bring up Eleftherios to love the Lord.His childhood was spent in Greece.At the age of 12 he went to Rome with his mother.There he was introduced to the martyr bishop Anikito.Eleftherios studied near the bishop and grew to love God.At the age of 15 the bishop made him a deacon. Three years later he baecame a priest.About 2 years later he, in effect, was ordained Bishop of Rome. From the years of 161-180 AD the Christians were persecuted by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelios, and many were tortured.Eleftherios never wavered in his faith.He was tortured himself with a heated copper bed,heated oven and scalding hot oils,but he never renounced his faith.
His torturer Cremmona saw this and converted to Christianity himself.For this he was executed.Many followed Cremmona to the faith.Eleftherios was eventually beheaded to stem the tide of converts.
As his head fell to the ground his mother Anthia ran to craddle the corpse of her son. She was executed there and then too. Thus mother and son died together. We celebrate their day on December 15th each year
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