Saint Martina of Rome

St. Martina of Rome (d. 228 A.D.) was born to a noble Roman family and orphaned at a young age. She was zealous in the practice of her faith, remained a virgin, and, in preparation for the Christian persecutions sweeping the city, gave much of her inheritance to the poor. She was martyred under Roman Emperor Alexander Severus. According to the accounts of her martyrdom, she was discovered praying in a church and was arrested by Roman soldiers. She was ordered to pay homage to the pagan gods, which she refused. She was then cruelly tortured over several days. She was raked with iron hooks and scourged, and when a bright light enveloped her, some of her torturers were converted to the Faith amid her fervent prayers. She was then taken to the temple of Diana to be forced to offer sacrifice, but at her presence the temple's demon left with a scream. They next tried to throw her to a lion (it showed no interest in her) and to burn her alive, but she would not catch fire. Finally, she was beheaded. St. Martina's feast day is January 30.
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