St. Philopater Mercurius

St. Philopater Mercurius

St. Philopateer Mercurius was born in 225 A.D. of pagan parents in the city of Cappadocia located in Eastern Asia Minor (Modern Day Turkey). His parents  converted to Christianity and taught the saint about our Lord Jesus Christ. He would go on to join the Roman army at the age of 17 and quickly gained a reputation for being a great swordsman. As war had broken out, St. Philopateer  had a vision.  The saint saw a man surrounded by light holding a drawn sword in his right hand. He then handed him the sword and told him that he would have victory over the barbarians and to remember the Lord, our God after the battle. St. Philopateer would go on to slay the barbarian leader and was promoted to “Supreme Commander of all the Roman Armies” at 25 years of age. Later on, the Roman Emperor Decius was informed that the Saint was Christian. He started inflicting many grievous tortures on our hero untill december of 250 AD when Saint Philopateer Mercurius received the crown of martyrdom by beheading.

In this Icon, the Bishop on the right is St. Basil the Great and Emperor Julian the Apostate can be seen being slain under St. Philopateer. This depiction comes from the story of when St. Basil prayed to an icon of St. Philopateer. He asked him to intercede with God not to allow the Emperor Julian to return home from battle, only to continue persecuting the Christians. The figure of St Philopateer disappeared from the icon and returned the next day with blood on his swords. That same day, Emperor Julian died in battle.

May the Saint’s holy blessing be with us all amen.

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