Friday, March 07, 2008

Stational Church: San'Eusebio

This church is the dominicum Eusebii, recorded in an epitaph of 474 as the home of the “heroic Roman priest, Eusebius.” Eusebius was condemned to death by starvation by the Arian Emperor Constantinus in 357. His home was converted into a titulus, one of the original twenty-five parishes of Rome, and this oratory is mentioned in the Councils held by Gelasius in 494 and by Symmachus in 499. It was formally erected into a station by Gregory the Great. Restored many times, the church was reconstructed in 1238 by Gregory IX, who dedicated it to Saint Eusebius and Saint Vincent, martyr, who died on January 22, 304.

While little is known of Saint Eusebius, we know that the early Church honored three martyred deacons from different localities: Stephen (Palestine), Lawrence (Rome), and Vincent (Spain), remembered in this church. Vincent was martyred in Valencia, Spain, during the persecution of Diocletian and Maximian. The Acts of the Martyrs describes his torments in some detail and records Vincent’s speech to Dacian, governor of Spain: “The more I witness your fury, Dacian, the greater is my pleasure. Do not lessen in any way the sufferings you prepare for me so that I can make my victory shine more resplendently.”

The relics of Saint Eusebius are interred beneath the high altar.

~from Pontifical North American College

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