The Holy Martyr Codratus and those with him
Commemorated on March 10
The Holy Martyr
Codratus and those with him: During a time of persecution against
christians (in III Cent.) a certain pious woman by the name of Ruthyna fled
from Corinth to a mountain, for safety from her pursuers. There she gave to a
son Codratus, and soon after birth she died. By the Providence of God the
infant remained alive and was nourished in miraculous manner: a cloud drew down
over him, feeding him with sweet dew. The childhood and youthful years of Saint
Codratus were spent in the wilderness. Having grown up, he chanced upon
christians, who enlightened him with the light of the true faith. Codratus
studied at grammar, and later learned the physician's art and attained great
success at it. But most of all Codratus loved the wilderness solitude and he
spent a great part of his time in the hills, given over to prayer and
meditation upon God. Many years passed. In the wilderness frequently there came
to the saint his friends and followers to hear his instruction. Among them were
Cyprian, Dionysios, Anectus, Paul, Crescentus and many others.
By order of the persecutor of christians – the impious emperor Decius (249-251), the military commander Jason arrived at Corinth. Saint Codratus was arrested together with his comrades and thrown into prison. At the interrogations, Jason turned most frequently of all to Codratus as the eldest by age. The saint bravely defended his faith in Christ the Saviour. Then they began the torture. Saint Codratus, despite inhuman suffering, found in himself the strength to encourage others, urging them not to be terrified and to stand firmly for the faith. Not having gained renunciation from any of them, Jason gave orders to throw the martyrs for rending apart by wild beasts. But the beasts did not touch them. They tied the saints by their feet to chariots and dragged them through the city, and many of the crowd threw stones at them. Finally they condemned the martyrs to beheading by the sword. At the place of execution the martyrs requested for themselves a certain while for prayer, and then one after the other began to walk towards the executioner, bending their necks beneathe the upheld sword.
The remaining disciples of Saint Codratus likewise suffered for Christ: Dionysios (the other one) was stabbed in the night; Victorinus, Victor and Nicephoros were crushed alive in a large stone press; for Claudius they chopped off the hands and the feet; Diodoros was thrown into a bonfire prepared for him; Serapion was decapitated; Papias and Leonides they drowned in the sea. Imitating the menfolk, many holy women also went voluntarily to sufferings for Christ.
© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.