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March 31

St Benjamin - March 31

Saint Benjamin
Deacon, Martyr
(Around 410 – Around 424)

“What would you think of a subject who would renounce his allegiance and join in the war against him?”

Saint Benjamin’s defense alluding to his being a subject of Christ the eternal King

His Early Years

Benjamin was born around 410 in an unknown exact location most likely Persia (modern Iran). Little is known of his youth or his family. At some point, Benjamin became a deacon.

Christian Persecution

The Persian monarch Isdegerdes, son of Sapor III, put a stop to the cruel persecutions against the Christians begun by Sapor II. The Christians in Persia had enjoyed twelve years of peace during the reign of Isdegerd. However, in 420, this peace was disturbed by the indiscreet zeal of Abdas, a Christian Bishop who burned the Temple of Fire, the great sanctuary of the Persians. King Isdegerd threatened to destroy all the churches of the Christians unless the Bishop would rebuild it.

Since Bishop Abdas refused to comply, the threat was executed and the churches were demolished. In addition, Bishop Abdas himself was put to death, and a general persecution began which lasted forty years. King Isdegerd died in 421, but his son and successor, King Varanes, carried on the persecution with great fury. The Christians were submitted to the most cruel tortures.

His Ministry

Benjamin was known for his unwavering faith and dedication to God. Despite facing persecution and danger from the authorities, he refused to renounce his beliefs or stop spreading the gospel. Instead, he continued to travel from town to town, preaching the love of God and helping those in need.

Benjamin’s compassionate nature and selfless spirit earned him the respect and admiration of the people he encountered, and many were inspired by his faith and devotion. As a result, the number of Christians in the region continued to grow, much to the chagrin of the authorities.

Martyered Deacon

During this time of persecution among the glorious champions of Christ was Benjamin, a deacon. King Varanes caused Benjamin to be beaten and imprisoned. Benjamin had lain a year in the dungeon, when an ambassador from the Emperor of Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey) interceded for him and obtained his release on condition that he never speak to any of the courtiers about religion.

Although he had been liberated on the agreement made with the ambassador and the Persian authorities, Benjamin would not acquiesce in it and neglected no opportunity of preaching in the streets. Benjamin, however, declared it was his duty to preach Christ and that he could not be silent.

King Varanes was informed that Benjamin was still preaching the Faith in his kingdom. So, Benjamin was again apprehended and brought before the king. At his trial, Benjamin’s only defense when they brought him before the king was the following: “What would you think of a subject who would renounce his allegiance and join in the war against him?” obviously alluding to his being a subject of Christ the eternal King. The Persian king was not impressed. To deter other Christians, King Varanes ordered cruel tortures.

First, Benjamin had reeds thrust in between his nails and his flesh and into all the tenderest parts of his body and then withdrawn. After this torture had been repeated several times, a knotted stake was inserted into his bowels to rend and tear him. Benjamin died in the most terrible agony impaled on a stake around the year 424 in Persia.

Born :                   Around 410 in Persia (modern Iran)

Died:                    Around 424 in Persia (modern Iran)

Beatified:            Pre-Congregation

Canonized:         Pre-Congregation

Feast Day:          March 31

Patron Saint:     Evangelists; People Persecuted for Their Faith; Protection

Source:

Reflection 

Saint Benjamin’s unwavering commitment to God, even in the face of persecution, serves as a testament to the strength of his faith and the depth of his devotion. His selfless nature and compassion towards those in need inspire us to follow in his footsteps and make a positive difference in the world. May we never fear voicing our love for You.

While we may never be exposed to cruel persecutions that Saint Benjamin experienced, today do some act of kindness to a complete stranger so that others may not feel neglected of the love of our most merciful and gracious Lord.

Prayers

Saint Benjamin,

O most holy martyr, who cheerfully suffered most cruel torments for God our Saviour and His love, on which account you are now most intimately and familiarly united to Him, may you pray to the Lord for me, a poor sinners. May He infuse into me the grace of God, to enlighten our souls to love Christ as you loved Him!

Saint Benjamin, pray for me.

Saint Links 

All Saints & Martyrs – Saint Benjamin – Deacon and Martyr

AnaStpaul – St Benjamin the Deacon (Died c 424) Martyr

Bartleby – Rev. Alban Butler Volume XI: November. The Lives of the Saints. 1866. November 4 St. Charles Borromeo, Cardinal, Archbishop of Milan, Confessor

Catholic Culture – St. Benjamin

Catholic Exchange – St. Benjamin, Deacon & Martyr

Catholic Lane – St. Benjamin, Deacon and Martyr

Catholic Online – St. Benjamin

CatholicSaints.Info – Saints of the Day – Benjamin the Deacon – by Katherine I Rabenstein

Christian Apostles – St. Benjamin

Daily Prayers – Benjamin

Reason2BCatholic – Saints Alive! | St. Benjamin of Persia, Deacon

Saints and Angels – St. Benjamin

Saints, Feast, Family – Saint Benjamin

Saint of the Day – March 31 St. Benjamin

Sanctoral – Saint Benjamin Deacon, Martyr (424)

The Daily Mass – St. Benjamin

uCatholic – Saint Benjamin the Deacon

Video Link

Saint Benjamin the Deacon, March 31 – YouTube (A D Paul)

March 31st St. Benjamin | The Saint of the Day Podcast – YouTube (Good Catholic)