St Benjamin was born AD 329 in Iran and he died by execution in AD424 inIran.
There was a period of great persecution of Christians in Persia thatlasted for forty years and it was facilitated by two Persian kings namedIsdegerd who passed away in 421 and his son and successor Varanes V.
This persecution was triggered when a Christian Bishop named Abdasburned down the Temple of Fire which was a sacred sanctuary of thePersians. The bishop was asked to rebuild that temple but he refusedstating that he cannot partake in such profanity. During these timesChristians were subjected to extreme tortures and Benjamin wasunfortunately one of those imprisoned for his Christian faith.
The torture was so inhumane and examples of some of the torturingmethods are flaying of hands and backs. Sometimes the skin of the headwas stripped.
Benjamin who was a deacon was imprisoned for a year and the EasternRoman Emperor Theodosius II through an ambassador facilitated hisrelease. The ambassador agreed on Benjamin’s behalf that he will bereleased on the condition that he will abandon the preaching andspeaking about his Christian religion.
Benjamin on the other hand did not agree as he strongly believed that itwas his duty to evangelize and tell others about Christ. He continued topreach which resulted in him being arrested again and he was broughtbefore the King.
The emperor then ordered that St Benjamin be tortured, this was after hehad asked St Benjamin to deny Him whom he worshiped and St Benjaminassertively refused.
Reeds were stuck under his nails both on the toes and fingers and theywere drawn. The process was repeated again with violence. The reeds werealso inserted into some of his tender parts. A knotty stake was alsothrust into his bowels resulting in the tearing of his internal organsand this was the final straw which resulted in him becoming a martyr forhis Christian faith in the year AD 424.
He showed Christians that no matter how much pain they endured, theymust continue proclaiming the gospel.
Benjamin’s feast day is celebrated on the 31st of March. He is knownas the patron saint of the preachers.
5 Interesting Facts About St. Benjamin
- St Benjamin is considered a Martyr by the Roman Catholics but he
is not involved in the General Roman Calendar.
- St Benjamin is also celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox church on
the 13th of October.
- He knew exactly what would happen to him but he deliberately
decided to continue preaching the gospel.
- St Benjamin medal usually depicts him while in jail whilst still
holding on to his faith.
- When the reeds were driven into his nails, he took it as child’s
play and this angered the king.
Prayer to St. Benjamin
Glorious Saint Benjamin, constant preacher and Martyr for the Faith,filled with compassion for those who invoke you, I kneel at your feetand humbly beg you to take my present need under your specialprotection. Vouchsafe to recommend it to our Lord Jesus. Cease not tointercede for me until my request is granted. Above all, obtain for methe grace to one day meet God face to face, and with you and Mary andall the angels and saints praise Him through all eternity. Amen.