SAINTS CYRIACUS, LARGUS SMARAGDUS AND THEIR
A. D. 303.
ST. CYRIACUS was a holy deacon at Rome, under the
popes Marcellinus and Marcellus. In the persecution of Dioclesian, in
303, he was crowned with a glorious martyrdom in that city. With him
suffered also Largus and Smaragdus, and twenty others, among whom are
named Crescentianus, Sergius, Secondus, Alban, Victorianus,
Faustinus, Felix, Sylvanus, and four women, Memmia, Juliana,
Cyriacides, and Donata. Their bodies were first buried near the place
of their execution on the Salarian way; but were soon after
translated into a farm of the devout lady Lucina, on the Ostian road,
on this eighth day of August, as is recorded in the ancient Liberian
Calendar, and others.
To honor the martyrs and duly celebrate their
festivals, we must learn their spirit, and study to imitate them
according to the circumstances of our state. We must, like them,
resist evil unto blood, must subdue our passions, suffer afflictions
with patience, and bear with others without murmuring or complaining.
Many practise voluntary austerities cheerfully, only because they are
of their own choice. But true patience requires, in the first place,
that we bear all afflictions and contradictions from whatever quarter
they come; and in this consists true virtue. Though we pray for
heaven our prayers will not avail, unless we make use of the means
which God sends to bring us thither. The cross is the ladder by which
we must ascend.