St. Felix and St. Cyprian
Feast Day: October 12
Felix and Cyprian were African bishops. They suffered with over 4,900 martyrs in the terrible persecution by the Vandals.
Huneric, the Arian Vandal king, drove these Christians into the Libyan desert. There they were treated with great cruelty, tortured and killed by the Moors for their faith in Christ.
A holy bishop named Victor tried to help the poor Christians who had been shut up in a horrible prison and packed in without sufficient air or light.
He wrote the story of their courage and their sufferings. Bishop Victor says that when they were ordered into exile in the terrible desert, they came out of that prison singing hymns.
Other Christians burst into tears at the sight of their great courage. Even women and children went with them to exile and death.
The story is told of Bishop St. Felix. He was so old, half-paralyzed and so crippled that someone said to the Vandal king Hunneric: "You might just as well leave him here to die."
But King Huneric cruelly answered, "If he cannot ride a horse, he can be dragged by oxen." In the end, they decided to tie the brave old bishop to a donkey and he was carried off to die in the desert.
We also celebrate St. Cyprian who risked his own life to take care of as many prisoners as he could. He spent all his time and strength, plus everything he owned, to help them.
At last, he, too, was arrested and sent into exile. There he also died a martyr from the cruel treatment reserved for Christians.
These two men followed the example of Jesus as leaders in the Church. They gladly served those whom they guided with great generosity.
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