Saint Onesimus

illustration of Saint Onesimus returning to Philemon, the letter from Saint Paul the Apostle in his hand; taken from 'Pictorial Lives of the Saints', 1892, artist unknownAlso known as

  • Onesimo



Slave of the Colossian Christians Saint Philemon and Saint Apphia. Committed a theft and fled from punishment to Rome where he hid with Saint Paul the Apostle. Paul converted him, then sent him home carrying the canonical Letter to Philemon. He was freed.



Name Meaning

  • helpful; profitable
Additional Information


Therefore, although I have the full right in Christ to order you to do what is proper, I rather urge you out of love, being as I am, Paul, an old man, and now also a prisoner for Christ Jesus. I urge you on behalf of my child Onesimus, whose father I have become in my imprisonment, who was once useless to you but is now useful to both you and me. I am sending him, that is, my own heart, back to you. I should have liked to retain him for myself so that he might serve me on your behalf in my imprisonment for the gospel, but I did not want to do anything without your consent, so that the good you do might not be forced but voluntary. – Philemon 1:8-14

MLA Citation

  • “Saint Onesimus“. CatholicSaints.Info. 25 October 2021. Web. 27 October 2021. <>