On this day we commemorate the martyrdom of Saints John and James, Bishops of Persia, at the hands of Sapor, the son of Hermez, King of Persia. When the King commanded them to worship and to offer sacrifices to the sun and fire, they refused. Instead, they continued teaching the people and confirming them in the faith of the Lord Jesus. The King tortured them severely, and as they would not turn from the faith and would not cease from teaching the people and strengthening them, he ordered that they be cast into a fire.
They gave up their souls into the hands of
the Lord and received the crown of glory with the host of saints.
On this day also we commemorate the martyrdom of Saints Epimachus and Azarianus, who were from the City of Rome. The Governor, who was appointed by Emperor Maximianus, was informed that they were Christians. As he brought them and questioned their faith they confessed that they were Christians. They also reproved him for having forsaken the worship of God who created the heaven, the earth, and all that is therein and for worshipping man-made idols which could neither see nor hear because wherein dwelt Satan who misled many men. The Governor was astonished at their audacity and commanded their necks to be cut off, and they received the crowns of martyrdom.