Five Saints of Sebaste (Patmos, 1650-70) – S409


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Church Feast Day 1



Egg Tempera


St. John the Theologian Monastery, Patmos, Greece


Skordilis, Fr. Emmanuel




This icon was painted in 1650-1670 by the priest Emmanuel Skordilis who was in Chania from 1647-1671.  It shows five men from different backgrounds who were martyred together in Sebaste in the late 3rd century.  St. Auxentius was a priest, and as he was being tortured for his faith, the Roman general St. Eustratius was so moved by beholding his tortures that he declared that he, too, was now a Christian.  As St. Eustratius was being tortured, St. Eugene cried out that he, too, was a Christian as well.

As these three were being driven through the city, St. Mardarius saw them from his rooftop and hastened to join them.  The soldier Orestes was at target practice in another location in the city when the cross that he was wearing around his neck fell out from his breast.  He thereupon openly confessed his faith and was joined to be martyred with the others.  St. Orestes was roasted on a red-hot iron grid, and St. Auxentius was beheaded.  St. Eustratius died in a flaming furnace, and SS Eugene and Mardarius died under torture.  Together they glorify God now in Heaven.  Later their relics were transferred to their church in Constantinople.