May 26 - The Holy Martyr Alexander of Rome

During the journey the holy martyr was cruelly tortured many times, but he endured all the tortures honorably . . .

The Holy Martyr Alexander of Rome

In the beginning of the fourth century, in the regiment of the tribune Tiberian, there was a seventeen-year-old soldier named Alexander. By the emperor's decree, Tiberian gathered all of his soldiers together to go to Jupiter's temple and offer sacrifices.

Alexander, however, having been raised up since childhood in the Christian faith, refused to submit to the order. He declared that he would never sacrifice to demons.

The tribune feared for his own life, and reported to Emperor Maximian that there was a black sheep in his regiment — a Christian. The emperor immediately sent for the soldier.

At the same time, an angel woke the sleeping Alexander, telling him about his approaching martyrdom. He also comforted him, promising to remain with him during all of the tortures.

Alexander bravely stood before Maximian, confessed his faith in Christ, and refused to worship the idols, adding that he did not fear the emperor or his threats.

The emperor tried to persuade the young man with various promises of honors, but Alexander remained firm in his confession and denounced the pagans.

Maximian gave Alexander over to the tribune Tiberian, who was setting out to persecute the Christians in Thrace. They put Alexander in chains and led him away to Thrace.

During the journey the holy martyr was cruelly tortured many times, but he endured all the tortures honorably, being guarded by the angel.

With God's help, Alexander performed many miracles. For instance, while Alexander was praying under a tree for God to strengthen him in his sufferings, the fruits and leaves of that tree received the power to heal.

Finally, in the town of Drizipera, Tiberian sentenced the martyr to death. The soldier who had to fulfill the order could not lift his sword for a long time, because he saw the angel that had come to take Alexander's soul. The angels then became invisible by the martyr's prayers, and the executioner cut off his honorable head. The martyr's grave soon became famous for its miraculous healings.

The twenty-sixth of May is the feast day of the Holy Martyr Alexander of Rome.

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