Martyr Edesius (Aidesius) of Lycia

The Holy Martyrs Edesius and Amphianus were brothers. They lived in the city of Patara (province of Lycia) in the family of the pagan governor. They went to the city of Beirut to study the pagan sciences. There they became ardent followers of Christ.

The holy brothers left their pagan parents and went to Alexandrian Caesarea, where they found an instructor, St Pamphilius (February 16), and under his guidance they became accomplished in the spiritual life, spending their time in prayer and the study of sacred books.

By decree of the emperor Maximian (305-313), a zealous pagan and cruel persecutor of Christians, all the inhabitants of Caesarea were required to offer public sacrifice. Many Christians, including Sts Amphianus and Edesius, had to hide in order to avoid sacrificing to idols.

Amphianus was arrested when he tried to prevent the city prefect of Caesarea from offering sacrifice. He was tortured, then thrown into the sea with a stone about his neck. Suddenly a storm arose, and the waves carried the martyr’s body to shore, where it was buried by Christians. The martyr’s brother, St Edesius, was tortured and sent to the copper mines.

After a while they freed St Edesius and sent him to Alexandria. There he boldly denounced the governor Hierokles for his extreme cruelty towards Christians. St Edesius was tortured and then drowned.