Eucharistic Crusade

Martyr of the Month

Saint Mary (Virgin and Martyr)

Feast day November 1

Mary was a slave of Tertullus, a Roman official. She was brought up as a Christian, and was the only Catholic in the house. When she was older, she prayed much and fasted often, especially on festivals when the pagan idols were given greater honour. Her mistress did not like this type of behaviour, but she liked Mary because the girl was a good worker, who always kept herself busy.

When persecution against the Christians broke out, Tertullus tried to cause Mary to give up her Catholic Faith, but Mary remained firm and constant in the Faith. Tertullus feared that he would lose Mary, if she fell into the hands of the Prefect, so he had her whipped. While the poor girl was being whipped, no kindness was shown to her, and after she was hidden in a dark room.

Later, the Prefect found out what had been done to Mary, and Tertullus was charged with hiding a Christian in his house. The young girl was then handed over to the Prefect. When the crowd of people heard Mary confess the Holy Name of Christ, they cried out, "Burn her alive! Burn her alive!"
Mary was calm. She stood there praying, "Dear God, please make me strong in the Faith and help me to persevere as a good Christian, until my death." Then she said to the Judge, "The God whom I serve is with me. I do not fear your torments, which can only take away a life that I am ready to lay down for Christ."

The Judge then commanded that Mary be tortured. But she was tortured with such cruelty, that the people standing nearby cried out, "We cannot bear to see this poor girl treated with such cruelty! Release the girl! Release the poor girl!"

The Judge then handed Mary over to a soldier. The good soldier saw that the poor girl was helpless, and allowed her to escape. St. Mary lived the rest of her life doing everything for God, and she died a natural death, possibly in the 4th Century. She is called a Martyr, in the Roman Martyrology, because of the sufferings she bore for the sake of Christ.

St. Mary, Pray for Us!

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