Jan. 21 Memorial of St. Agnes, Virgin and Martyr, Memorial

Memorial of St. Agnes, Entrance Antiphon:Behold, now she follows the Lamb who was crucified for us, powerful in virginity, modesty her offering, a sacrifice on the altar of chastity. Alleluia Verse for St. Agnes, Jn 15:9b 5b: Remain in my love, says the Lord; whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit. Communion Antiphon, Rev 7:7:The Lamb who is at the center of the throne will lead them to the springs of the waters of life. St. Agnes (c. 304), like St. Cecilia, is to be numbered among the most famous martyrs of Rome. When the Diocletian persecution was at its height, and when priests as well as laymen were apostatizing from the faith, Agnes, a girl of twelve, freely chose to die for Christ. When she was commanded to offer incense to false gods, she raised her hand to Christ and made the Sign of the Cross. When the heathens threatened to bind her hand and foot, she herself hastened to the place of torture as a bride to her wedding feast. Pain had no terror for her–although the fetters slipped from her small hands while even the pagan bystanders were moved to tears.

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