lundi 8 mai 2017


Le Martyre de Saint Acacio (Acacius, Agathus, Agathius). XVIe siècle,  Museo del Prado

Saint Acace

Soldat martyr à Byzance ( 303)

Comme tous les soldats, il dut un jour offrir l'encens à la statue de l'empereur pour témoigner de sa loyauté. Il refusa. Conduit à Byzance, il eut les mâchoires brisées durant le voyage et souvent flagellé. Il resta fidèle à Jésus Christ et fut décapité dans le quartier du Staurion à Constantinople où une petite église fut construite en son honneur.

À Byzance, vers 303, saint Acace, soldat, martyr

Martyrologe romain

Acacius of Byzantium M (RM)

(also known as Agathus, Agario, Acato)

Died c. 303. Saint Acacius was a Cappadocian centurion in the Roman army stationed in Thrace, who was tortured and beheaded at Byzantium under Diocletian. Constantine the Great built a church in his honor (Benedictines).

In art, Saint Acacius is a centurion with a bunch of thorns. He may also be shown (1) in armor with a standard and shield, or (2) in Byzantine art, with Saint Theodore Tyro (Roeder). He is venerated as San Acato in Avila and Cuenca (Spain) and as Saint Agario in Squillace (Calabria, Italy) (Roeder).

Saint Acacius of Byzantium

Also known as
  • Acacius of Constantinople
  • Acato of Avila
  • Acathius
  • Achatius of Byzantium
  • Agathius of Byzantium
  • Agathus of Byzantium
  • Agazio (in Calabria)
  • Cuenca (in Spain)

Christian centurian in the imperial Roman army stationed in Thrace. Tortured and executed in the persecutions of Diocletian. Several churches in Constantinople dedicated to him, including one dedicated by Constantine the Great. One of the Fourteen Holy Helpers.

tortured, scourged, and beheaded c.303 in Constantinople

Martyr Acacius the Centurion at Byzantium

Commemorated on May 7

Saint Acacius lived in the third century, and was an officer in the Roman army during the time of Maximian. At his interrogation he declared that he had received a devout faith from his parents, and that he would remain steadfast in it, for he had seen many miracles of healing which took place at the relics of the saints.

After enduring many tortures in the city of Pyrrinthus, Thrace, he was taken to Byzantium. There he suffered further torments and was beheaded with a sword in the year 303.

The Holy Martyr Acacius

Commemorated on May 7

      The Holy Martyr Acacius, who lived mostly in the III Century, was born at Cappadocia and was a centurion of the Martesian regiment under the military officer Firmus. When the persecution against Christians was started up on order of the emperor Maximian Galerius (305-311), Firmus began one after the other to interrogate his soldiers about their faith. Saint Acacius thereupon firmly and openly confessed himself a Christian. Seeing the steadfastness of Saint Acacius, Firmus sent him off to the military officer higher up in command, named Vivianus. Vivianus gave the saint over to fierce torture. After the tortures they put him in heavy chains and locked him up in prison. A certain while later they led the martyr together with other prisoners to Byzantium, to the governor. The soldiers accompanying them went along quickly, showing the prisoners no mercy, and Saint Acacius weakened along the way from his wounds, and also from his chains and hunger and thirst. When finally they halted for the night, Saint Acacius offered up thanks to God, for granting him to suffer for His Holy Name. During the time of prayer the saint heard a voice from the heavens: "Valour, Acacius, and be strong!" This voice was heard also by the other prisoners, and many of them believed in Christ and besought the saint to instruct them and further them in the Christian faith. 

      At Byzantium they situated the holy martyr in onerous lockup, while the other prisoners were put under less severe conditions. But at night the other prisoners beheld, how radiant youths appeared to Saint Acacius and attended to him, washing his wounds and bringing him food. After seven days, Vivianus again summoned Saint Acacius before him and was struck by his fresh appearance. Supposing, that the prison guard for money had given the prisoner both respite and food, he summoned the guard for a strict questioning. And not believing his answers, Vivianus had the guard severely beaten. Saint Acacius himself thereupon answered Vivianus: "My power and strength art given me by the Lord Jesus Christ, Who hath healed my wounds". Vivianus in a frenzy of rage gave orders to beat the martyr about the face and smash his teeth for his unsolicited words. Striving all the more to intensify and prolong the torture of Saint Acacius, Vivianus sent him off to the governor Flaccinus with a letter. But having read the letter, Flaccinus became annoyed, that Vivianus had for so long and so cruelly tortured a soldier holding the venerable rank of centurion, and he gave orders to without further delay behead the martyr. At the place of execution Saint Acacius lifted up his eyes to the heavens, offering up thanks to God for being granted to accept a martyr's death for Him, and then with a calm joy he lay down his head beneathe the sword. This occurred in the year 303. Under Constantine the Great the relics of the holy Martyr Acacius rested at Constantinople in a church built in his honour, and later they were transferred to Calabria, to the city of Scillatio. The holy Martyr Acacius particularly helps those resorting to him in prayer in struggle with the flesh, as discovered by himself for Saint Epiphanios, a disciple of the Fool-for-Christ Saint Andrew.

© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

Sant' Agazio (Acacio) Soldato e martire

m. 304

Sant'Acacio (o Agazio) morì martire intorno al 304. Centurione cappadoce dell'esercito romano di stanza in Tracia, fu accusato dal tribuno Firmo e dal Proconsole Bibiano di essere cristiano e, dopo aspre torture e tormenti, fu decapitato a Bisanzio sotto Diocleziano e Massimiano. L'imperatore Costantino il Grande costruì una chiesa-santuario in suo onore alla Karìa di Costantinopoli. Da almeno tredici secoli (dopo l'introduzione del rito bizantino nella diocesi di Squillace a seguito della soggezione della stessa al patriarcato di Costantinopoli) è Patrono della città e della diocesi di Squillace (ora arcidiocesi di Catanzaro-Squillace). (Avvenire)

Patronato: Squillace (CZ), Guardavalle (CZ)

Etimologia: Agazio = buono, dal greco

Emblema: Palma

Martirologio Romano: A Bisanzio, sant’Acacio, soldato, martire.

Sant'Agazio, centurione e martire, che nel rito latino è commemorato l'8 maggio, morì intorno al 304. Era un centurione cappadoce dell'esercito romano di stanza in Tracia, fu accusato dal tribuno Firmo e dal Proconsole Bibiano di essere cristiano e, dopo aspre torture e tormenti, fu decapitato a Bisanzio sotto Diocleziano e Massimiano. L'imperatore Costantino il Grande costruì una Chiesa-Santuario in suo onore alla Karìa di Costantinopoli, dove divenne anche Patrono. 

Da almeno tredici secoli (iconoclastìa e introduzione del rito bizantino nella Diocesi di Squillace a seguito della soggezione della stessa al Patriarcato di Costantinopoli) è Patrono della Città e della Diocesi di Squillace (ora dell'Arcidiocesi di Catanzaro-Squillace). 

Il corpo del Santo Martire è custodito e venerato in una monumentale Cappella della Cattedrale di Squillace, mentre un braccio venne portato dal Vescovo di Squillace, Marcello Sirleto, nel 1584 a Guardavalle, suo paese natale, dove è stato anche eletto come Patrono.Sue Reliquie risultano anche a Cuenca ed Avila in Spagna, provenienti da Squillace. E' venerato tra i Santi Ausiliatori in diverse parti dell'Europa centro-settentrionale. 

A Squillace si celebrano tuttora due Feste solennissime: una il 16 gennaio, detta della Traslazione o delle Ossa, che rievoca l'arrivo miracoloso al lido di Squillace delle Sante Reliquie, e l'altra il 7 maggio, giorno del Martirio del Santo a Bisanzio tramandato dai Menologi bizantini e mantenuto ininterrottamente a Squillace. In questo giorno, preceduto e seguito da un'antichissima Fiera, conviene nella Cattedrale di Squillace tutto il Clero della Diocesi che presta l'Obbedienza al Vescovo Diocesano e partecipa ai riti e alla processione solenne.

Autore: Istituto Cassiodoro - Squillace (CZ)