Catholic News Herald

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perpetuaSts. Perpetua and Felicity were martyrs who died for the faith around the year 203, just after the death of Pope St. Victor I.

St. Perpetua was a young, well-educated noblewoman and mother living in the city of Carthage in North Africa. Her mother was a Christian and her father was a pagan. In terms of her faith, Perpetua followed the example of her mother. Despite the pleas of her father to deny her faith, Perpetua did the very opposite, and fearlessly proclaimed it.

At the age of 22, she was imprisoned for her faith. While in prison, she continued to care for her infant child and put up with the tortures designed to make her renounce her faith. Perpetua remained steadfast until the end. She was sacrificed at the games as a public spectacle for not renouncing her faith.

St. Felicity was a pregnant slave girl who was imprisoned with St. Perpetua. Little is known about the life of St. Felicity because, unlike Perpetua, she did not keep a diary of her life. After imprisonment and torture, Felicity was also condemned to die at the games. Only a few days before her execution, Felicity gave birth to a daughter, who was secretly taken away to be cared for by some of the faithful.

The feast of these saints is March 7, and their names are forever mentioned together in the Roman Canon of the Mass.

— Catholic News Agency

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