Weninger’s Lives of the Saints – Saint Eusebius, Priest and Martyr

woodcut of Saint Eusebius of Rome, date and artist unknown; swiped from Santi e BeatiArticle

Saint Eusebius, a Roman, born of Christian parents, lived at the time of the Arian emperor Constantius. As the latter persecuted the Catholics as cruelly as the former heathen emperors had done, Eusebius endeavored to encourage the Catholics to adhere to their faith, and to guard them against the prevailing heresy. No sooner had the emperor heard of this, than Eusebius was seized and taken into the imperial palace, and placed within two walls, so that he could neither turn nor sit down, but was obliged to remain in a standing position. He daily received sufficient food to keep him alive, that he might be in torture so much the longer. How dreadfully the holy priest suffered from such unheard of cruelty can easily be imagined. Nothing was free but his tongue and his heart, and these were continually used for the glory of God. With his tongue he unceasingly praised his Lord, asking Him for strength, and offering to Him all that he had to endure, while his heart was filled with the most fervent love for God. This terrible imprisonment lasted for six months, and just so long this holy man continued loving and praising the Lord. In the seventh month he expired and obtained the freedom of the children of God. Two pious priests, Gregory and Orosius, found the opportunity to get possession of his blessed body, and burying it with the greatest honor, they placed upon his tomb the epitaph: “Here lies Eusebius, the Priest, a man of God.”

Practical Considerations

What do you think of the epitaph of Saint Eusebius? “Here lies a Man of God.” Saint Paul calls his holy disciple, Timothy, a man of God, when he writes: “But thou, O Man of God, fly these things, and pursue justice, godliness, faith, charity, patience, mildness,” etc. (1st Timothy 6) Can you be called so? A man of God, properly speaking, is not one who because created by God, and owing all his possessions to God, belongs to God; for, if that were the case, every heathen, Jew, Turk and heretic could claim this title of honor; no, it belongs only to him who lives according to the laws and the will of the Almighty; who serves God zealously and with constancy; who performs all his actions for the honor of God, and not only does not voluntarily offend Him, but does all in his power to prevent others from doing so; who seeks the honor of God, and is zealous to increase the glory of His Divine Name. The Almighty Himself says of David, who is also called, in Holy Writ, the man of God: “I have found David, a son of Jesse, a man after my own heart, who will fulfill all my commandments.” (2 Paralip. 8) “Whoever is pious,” writes the holy bishop Ignatius, “is a Man of God; but whoever is godless, is a man of the devil, not by nature, but by his own free will.” Now, examine yourself and see whether you are a child of God or of the devil; and try henceforth to live according to the will of God, and not according to the will and inspirations of the devil, in order that you may, from this hour, be called a “man of God.”

MLA Citation

  • Father Francis Xavier Weninger, DD, SJ. “Saint Eusebius, Priest and Martyr”. Lives of the Saints, 1876. CatholicSaints.Info. 2 April 2018. Web. 17 February 2019. <>