Saint Bademus de Perse
martyr (✝ v. 380)
Bademus ou Bademe et ses compagnons.
Né en Perse dans une riche famille noble, Bademus fonda un monastère près de Bethlapeta. Il passait de longs moments en prière et jeûnait de nombreux jours. Sa gentillesse, sa charité et sa sagesse le conduisirent sur la voie de la sainteté. Il fut arrêté avec sept de ses compagnons moines puis emprisonné et torturé sous le règne du roi Sapor vers l'an 380.
Un autre chrétien emprisonné en même temps nommé Nersan abjura et le roi lui ordonna de tuer Bademus ce qu'il fit. Ses disciples furent relâchés quatre ans plus tard.
Bademus of Persia, Abbot M (AC)
(also known as Bademe)
Born in Persia; died there c. 380. The rich and noble Saint Bademus founded and governed an abbey near Bethlapeta in Persia. There he passed whole nights in prayer, and sometimes went several days together without eating: bread and water were his usual fare. With sweetness, prudence, and charity, he conducted his religious in the paths of perfection. God crowned the virtues of Bademus with suffering by allowing the abbot and seven of his monks to be arrested for their faith, thrown into a dungeon, and whipped daily for four months.
Prince Nersan of Aria, a Christian member of the Persian court, was captured and imprisoned about that same time. He could not withstand the repeated torture and apostatized. To test Nersan's resolve, King Shapur promised to release Nersan and restore his former dignities, if the prince would murder Bademus with his own hands. Thus the wretch, fearing the he himself would be martyred, accepted the sword but frozen in fear as he was about to thrust it into the abbot's breast.
The undaunted Bademus stood before him and said: "Unhappy Nersan, to what a pitch of impiety do you carry your apostasy. With joy I run to meet death; but could wish to fall by some other hand than yours: why must you be my executioner?"
Nersan vacillated between fear of King Shapur and fear of the King of kings. Finally he struck with a trembling hand that made his sword unsteady and forceless. Thus, Bademus was pierced numerous times before Nersan could deliver the ultimate thrust that severed the head of Bademus. The martyr's body was cast outside the city gates, but was secretly retrieved and buried by the Christians. His disciples were released from their chains four years later at the death of Shapur (Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).
St. Bademus, Abbot, Martyr
From his original Syriac acts, written by St. Maruthas, published by Assemani, t. 1. p. 165. The Greek from Metaphrastes were given us by Henschenius, p. 828. and Ruinart, p. 680.
BADEMUS was a rich and noble citizen of Bethlapeta, in Persia, who, desiring to devote himself to the service of God, out of his estates founded a monastery near that city, which he governed with great sanctity. The purity of his soul had never been sullied by any crime, and the sweet odour of his sanctity diffused a love of virtue in the hearts of those who approached him. He watched whole nights in prayer, and passed sometimes several days together without eating: bread and water were his usual fare. He conducted his religious in the paths of perfection with sweetness, prudence, and charity. In this amiable retreat he enjoyed a calmness and happiness which the great men of the world would view with envy, did they compare with it the unquiet scenes of vice and vanity in which they live. But, to crown his virtue, God permitted him, with seven of his monks, to be apprehended by the pursuivants of King Sapor, in the thirty-sixth year of his persecution. He lay four months in a dungeon, loaded with chains; during which lingering martyrdom he was every day called out to receive a certain number of stripes. But he triumphed over his torments by the patience and joy with which he suffered them for Christ. At the same time, a Christian lord of the Persian court, named Nersan, prince of Aria, was cast into prison, because he refused to adore the sun. At first he showed some resolution; but at the sight of tortures his constancy failed him, and he promised to conform. The king, to try if his change was sincere, ordered Bademus to be brought to Lapeta, with his chains struck off, and to be introduced into the prison of Nersan, which was a chamber in the royal palace. Then his majesty sent word to Nersan, by two lords, that if, with his own hand, he would despatch Bademus, he should be restored to his liberty and former dignities. The wretch accepted the condition; a sword was put into his hand, and he advanced to plunge it into the breast of the abbot. But being seized with a sudden terror, he stopped short, and remained some time without being able to lift up his arm to strike. The servant of Christ stood undaunted, and, with his eyes fixed upon him, said: “Unhappy Nersan, to what a pitch of impiety do you carry your apostacy. With joy I run to meet death; but could wish to fall by some other hand than yours: why must you be my executioner?” Nersan had neither courage to repent, nor heart to accomplish his crime. He strove, however, to harden himself, and continued with a trembling hand to aim at the sides of the martyr. Fear, shame, remorse, and respect for the martyr, whose virtue he wanted courage to imitate, made his strokes forceless and unsteady; and so great was the number of the martyr’s wounds, that they stood in admiration at his invincible patience. At the same time they detested the cruelty, and despised the base cowardice of the murderer, who at last, aiming at his neck, after four strokes severed his head from the trunk. Neither did he escape the divine vengeance: for a short time after, falling into public disgrace, he perished by the sword, after tortures, and under the maledictions of the people. Such is the treachery of the world towards those who have sacrificed their all in courting it. Though again and again deceived by it, they still listen to its false promises, and continue to serve this hard master, till their fall becomes irretrievable. The body of St. Bademus was reproachfully cast out of the city by the infidels: but was secretly carried away and interred by the Christians. His disciples were released from their chains four years afterward upon the death of King Sapor. St. Bademus suffered on the 10th of the moon of April, in the year 376, of King Sapor the sixty-seventh.
Monks were called Mourners by the Syrians and Persians, because by their state they devoted themselves in a particular manner to the most perfect exercises of compunction and penance, which indeed are an indispensable duty of every Christian. The name of angels was often given them over all the East, during several ages, 1 because by making heavenly contemplation and the singing of the divine praises their great and glorious employment, if they duly acquit themselves of it, they may be justly called the seraphim of the earth. The soul which loves God, is made a heaven which he inhabits, and in which she converses with him in the midst of her own substance. Though he is infinite, and the highest heavenly spirits tremble before him, and how poor and base soever we are, he invites us to converse with him, and declares that it is his delight to be with us. Shall not we look upon it as our greatest happiness and comfort to be with Him, and to enjoy the unspeakable sweetness of his presence? Oh! what ravishing delights does a soul taste which is accustomed, by a familiar habit, to converse in the heaven of her own interior with the three persons of the adorable Trinity! Dissipated worldlings wonder how holy solitaries can pass their whole time buried in the most profound solitude and silence of creatures. But those who have had any experience of this happiness, are surprised with far greater reason how it is possible that any souls which are created to converse eternally with God, should here live in constant dissipation, seldom entertaining a devout thought of Him, whose charms and sweet conversation eternally ravish all the blessed.
Note 1. See Du Cange’s Glossary of the Greek Language for the middle ages. [back]
Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73). Volume IV: April. The Lives of the Saints. 1866
9 April 2010, 12:21 pm
Wealthy Persian noble. Founded and led a monastery in Bethlapeta, Persia. He and seven of his monks were imprisoned for their faith during the lengthy persecution by King Sapor. Chained and regularly beaten for four months, he was murdered by Nersan, an apostate Persian prince who hacked him to death to prove his renunciation of Christianity.
- clumsily beheaded 10 April 376
- body thrown to the dogs but recovered and secretly buried by Christians
Monkmartyr Bademus (Vadim) of Persia
Commemorated on April 9
Monk Martyr Archimandrite Bademus (Vadim) was born in the fourth century in the Persian city of Bithlapata, and was descended from a rich and illustrious family. In his youth, he was enlightened with the Christian teaching. The saint gave away all his wealth to the poor and withdrew into the wilderness, where he founded a monastery. He would go up on a mountain for solitary prayer, and once was permitted to behold the Glory of God.
During this period the Persian emperor Sapor (310-381) began to persecute Christians. They arrested St Bademus and his seven disciples, and tortured them in prison, hoping that they would renounce Christ and worship the sun and fire. But St Bademus and his disciples held firmly to the Christian Faith. The confessors spent four months in jail. All this time St Bademus was a spiritual leader and support for the Christians living in Persia.
One of the associates of the emperor Sapor, Nirsanes, was a Christian and suffered imprisonment for this. He did not hold up under torture and denied Christ, promising to fulfill whatever the emperor commanded. Sapor demanded that Nirsanes personally cut off the head of St Bademus. For this he was promised a reprieve and great rewards. Nirsanes was not able to overcome his fear of new tortures, and he agreed to follow the path of betrayal walked by Judas.
When they brought St Bademus to him, he took the sword and turned toward him, but overcome by conscience, he trembled and stood petrified. St Bademus said to him, “Has your wickedness now reached this point, Nirsanes, that you should not only renounce God, but also murder His servants? Woe to you, accursed one! What will you do on that day when you stand before the Dread Judgment Seat? What answer will you give to God? I am prepared to die for Christ, but I don’t want to receive death at your hands.”
Nirsanes struck with the sword, but his hands shook, and he could not behead the saint immediately, and the fire-worshippers began to call him a coward. The holy martyr Bademus stood motionless, enduring many terrible blows, until the murderer succeeded in cutting off his head.
The just punishment for his misdeeds were not slow in overtaking the hapless fellow. Tormented by his conscience, he did away with himself, throwing himself on a sword. After the death of the emperor Sapor, the seven disciples of St Bademus were released from prison.