Today’s Saint

Daily Journey with the Saints

February 24 | The Early Christians

The Martyrs of Carthage

A.D. 259

We often paint an idyllic picture of the early Christians. That for them, Christianity was a lifestyle. Their faith was the center of their lives; it affected everything they did. They shared meals together, played together, and cared for each other in sickness. 

If you read Acts 2:43–47, and just these verses, you could be led to believe it. But the rest of Acts demonstrates that everything was not so perfect among the first Christians.

The first deacons were chosen because the Gentile widows were not being cared for by the Jewish members of the Church. (Acts 6:1) Paul had to take Peter to task because he refused to eat with the Gentile converts. (Galatians 2:11–14) Paul severely criticized the Corinthian community letting the poor go hungry while the rich ate with their friends. (1 Corinthians 11:17–34)

Nevertheless, the first Christians had a commitment to the truth that is rarely found in modern society. And perhaps the reason they catch our imagination is that they often went beyond seeking to live the truth. Many of them were willing to die for it.

Such was the case with the Martyrs of Carthage. There had been a local uprising against the governor, Solon, and instead of conducting an investigation, he quickly blamed the Christians. Eight Christians were sentenced to death: Saints Montanus, Lucius, Flavian, Julian, Victoricus, Primolus, Rhenus, and Donatian. The story of their martyrdom, and what they endured, is harrowing to read. They themselves wrote the account of their imprisonment, and eye-witnesses wrote the account of their deaths. 

The early Christians were not perfect, but as a community, they possessed a rigorous commitment to the truth that is beyond inspiring. It is chilling in the best way. It calls us to a life so committed to the truth that we will give everything for it.

We may not be sentenced to death like the Martyrs of Carthage, but we’re all called to a rigorous commitment to the truth. We’re all called to seek the best way to live the Christian life. Are you and I rigorously seeking the best way to live the Christian life? What would happen if we did?


Today, I will rigorously seek to live the Gospel message.

This reflection is brought to you from book title.

Also Known As: Saints Montanus, Lucius, Flavian, Julian, Victoricus, Primolus, Rhenus, and Donatian

Feast Day: February 24

Image of mountain and man reflecting in the water below.

Get Daily Saint Reflections and More!

Start your day with Saint of the Day, Gospel Reflections, Mass readings, and other inspiration!

Image of woman holding the book the wisdom of the saints

Walk with the Saints

Gain wisdom from some of the greatest men and women who ever lived.