The Holy Martyr Felicitas with her Seven Sons, Januarius, Felix, Philip, Silvanus, Alexander, Vitalius and Martial.
St Felicity was an honorable Roman lady, recognized most importantly for her virtue.
She was brought into the world of a rich Roman family.
She strongly admitted before the Emperor and civil authorities that she was a Christian.
The Pagan priests said that she was offending the divine beings by spreading Christianity.
St Felicitas and her children were turned over to the Prefect Publius for torment.
St Felicitas saw the suffering of her children, and petitioned God that they would stand firm and enter the heavenly Kingdom before her. Every one of the children died as martyr before the eyes of their mom, who was being tormented herself. St Felicitas soon followed her children in martyrdom for Christ.
They endured at Rome about the year 164. St Gregory Dialogus specifies her in his Commentary on the Gospel of Saint Matthew (Mt.12:47).”
This mother of seven youngsters brought her children up in the fear of the Lord, and after the passing of her husband, served God in continence, concerning herself with acts of kindness.
Her good examples and those of her children brought a number of pagans to renounce their superstitions, and also encouraged the Christians to show themselves worthy of their vocation.
The Pagan priests, enraged at seeing their gods deserted, reprimanded her.
She showed up with her devout children before the regent of Rome, who exhorted her to sacrifice to idol, yet in answer heard a generous confession of faith.
Wretched lady, he said to her, how might you be so brutal as to open your kids to tortures and demise?
Have pity on these delicate creatures, who are in the bloom of their age and can seek to the most elevated positions in the Empire!. Felicity answered, My kids will live everlastingly with Jesus Christ, assuming that they are steadfast; they will have only eternal torments to await, if they sacrifice to the idol.
Your evident pity is nevertheless a savage iconoclasm. Then, going to her kids, she expressed: Look towards paradise, where Jesus Christ is hanging tight for you with His Saints! Be dedicated in His adoration, and battle fearlessly for your souls.
The Judge, taking the kids individually, attempted to conquer their steadiness. He started with Januarius, however got for his response: What you encourage me to do is in opposition to reason; Jesus, the Savior, will protect me, I trust, from such profanity.
Felix, the second, was then acquired. At the point when they asked him to forfeit, he replied: There is just a single God, and it is to Him that we should offer the penance of our souls. Utilize all ingenuities, each refinement of remorselessness, you won’t cause us to deceive our confidence!
Different siblings, when addressed, replied with a similar solidness.
Martial, the most youthful, who talked last, said: All the people who don’t admit that Jesus Christ is the genuine God, will be projected into a fire which won’t ever be stifled. At the point when the cross examination was done, the Saints went through the punishment of the lash and afterward were brought to jail. Before long they finished their punishment in different ways:
Januarius was beaten until he kicked the bucket by calfskin lashes covered with lead; Felix and Philip were killed with clubs; Sylvanus was tossed recklessly from a bluff; Alexander, Vitalis and Martial were guillotined. Felicity, the mother of these new Maccabees, was the last to endure affliction.