The Holy Martyrs Speusippos, Eleusippos, Meleusippos, and their grandmother Leonilla together with Neonos, Turbonos and Jovilla
Commemorated on January 16
The Holy Martyrs Speusippos, Eleusippos, Meleusippos, and their grandmother Leonilla together with Neonos, Turbonos and Jovilla suffered in Galilee (by another account, in Cappadocia) in the Second Century, during the time of the persecution under Marcus Aurelius (161-180). Leonilla received Baptism in her declining years from one of the disciples of Saint Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna, and she afterwards converted to Christ her three grandchildren. The brothers, out of their enthusiasm for the Lord, pulled down idols and reproached the pagans for their folly. The torturers, leading Leonilla to the place of execution, ordered her to say to her grandchildren that they should renounce Christ, but she in passing by them praised them for their bravery and their firm confession of faith. Then the martyrs were thrown into a fire, but it did not harm them. After the torturing and death of her grandchildren, Saint Leonilla was beheaded by the sword. Together with her suffered also Saint Jovilla. She beheld the unflinching faith of the holy martyrs and confessed herself a Christian, leaving behind an husband and young son. The torturers, having hung her up by the hair, lacerated her body and beheaded her. Saint Neonos beheld the exploits of the holy brothers, and having recorded their sufferings, gave his manuscript to Turbonos, and he openly confessed himself a Christian, for which he was fiercely beaten and died from his beating. Saint Turbonos, having copied out the exploits of the passion-bearers, also ended his life by martyrdom. These martyrs are particularly revered in Spain, where many churches are dedicated to them. The relics of the holy martyrs were given by the Greek emperor Zenon to France, in the city of Langre.
© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.