Saints Karpos, Papylos, Agathodoros and Agathoniki
Date of celebration: 13/10
Saints Karpos, Papylos, Agathodoros and Agathonikis were martyred when Decius (249 – 251 AD), cruel persecutor of Christians, was emperor. All of them had Pergamum as their homeland.
Karpos, with a perfect grammar education, pious and with many services in the Church, had become bishop of Thyatira. Papylos, who had studied medicine and offered his services without pay, became a deacon and a direct collaborator of Karpus. Agathodoros, a chosen and faithful soul, was a servant in the diocese of Thyateira. When all three were arrested by the proconsul Valerius, they defiantly confessed Christ before him.
Then Valerius said to them: “Christians are superstitious, incapable, without higher feelings. You, as educated people, must immediately refuse them.” Bishop Karpos responded to this accusation with the words of the Apostle Paul. An answer that was valid, is valid and will be valid throughout the centuries, for the mindset of conscious Christians.
So he said: “We toil, working with our own hands, we bless, when we are persecuted, we endure, when we are cursed, we pray”, which means, we Christian kings, we toil with our own hands. Then, while the unbelievers in the Gospel curse us and mock us, we wish good things for them. While they persecute us, we show them tolerance, while they slander us, we respond with sweet and pleading words.
Irritated by the answer, Valerius, after torturing them, along with Papylos’ sister Agathonikis, beheaded them all.