Saint Agnes of Rome 1

Saint Agnes

Saint Agnes of Rome was born around 237 in Rome and died there around 250 Her name: Agnus means lamb in Latin. She was born into a noble family. Already at the age of 12 she was radiantly beautiful and confident in her faith.

Even the son of the city prefect, Symphronius, had noticed this and so he asked for her hand. The noble Roman woman rejected him on the grounds that she was already engaged. When the young man asked her several times, she finally replied that her fiancé was Jesus Christ.

Saint Agnes was put on trial, but all the judge’s suggestions, pleas and threats could not shake her steadfastness. Then he ordered her to strip naked and force her into prostitution. But her long curls enveloped her like a thick cloak, and an angel brought her a robe of light, which shone through the whole house.

Symphronius and his friends sought her out in the brothel and backed away blinded. The young man himself fell dead, strangled by an evil spirit, when he tried to touch Agnes. Called back to life by her prayer, he denounced her as a witch.

The prefect dared neither save her nor condemn her. So he left the country and handed her over to another judge. He had her thrown into a great fire in the Domitian’s stadium, but the flames receded from her. Then the prefect ordered the executioner to put a sword through her throat. She was killed as lambs are killed.

Saint Agnes

Saint Agnes over the flames in Sant’Agnese in Agone (Rome)