Martyr Severian of Sebaste

The Holy Martyr Severian (+ 320) suffered for Christ in Armenian Sebaste during the governorship of Licius, when Christians were persecuted under the emperor Licinius. Even before his martyr’s deed, St Severian had shown sincere compassion for 40 Christian soldiers, suffering for confessing the Name of Christ. He visited the captives in prison, raised their spirits, and appealed to their valor and stoic strength. These martyrs met their death at Lake Sebaste (March 9).

Half a year later, Severian was also brought to trial for confessing the Christian Faith, and he was subjected to cruel tortures. Deeply devoted to the will of God, St Severian called out to the Lord during his torment, imploring Him for the strength to endure the suffering and to complete his deed of martyrdom.

After intense torture, and unbroken in his faith, the holy martyr was suspended from the city wall with one stone chained around his neck, and another chained to his feet, and so he died. His body was carried by Christians of Sebaste to his home, where the local inhabitants thronged to take their leave of him and to ask for his holy prayers. Amidst all this a dead man who had not yet been buried arose, a servant of St Severian, who got up from his deathbed to follow his master’s final path. He continued to live another fifteen years, never leaving the burial place of the holy martyr.