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Oratio Sancti Genesii
Prayer of St. Genesius
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St. Genesius (d c 303) was an actor in Rome, who while taking part in a burlesque parody of baptism, was suddenly converted and then shortly thereafter martyred. His feast is August 25. There is some confusion as to the exact identity of this saint for there is a nearly identical account of this conversion story given for St. Gelasinus (d 297, feast Aug. 26) in Heliopolis in Phoenicia. Because of this confusion with St. Gelasinus, some feel that it is likely that St. Genesius did not exist. Whether or not he did, the following is a famous prayer attributed to him shortly before he was beheaded.

NON est Rex praeter eum quem vidi; et adoro et colo eum; et pro eius cultura si milies occidar, ipsius ero ut coepi; Christum mihi de ore, Christum mihi de corde auferre tormenta non potuerunt. Valde enim paeniteo me errasse, quod ante nomen sanctum tuum in hominibus sanctis exhorrui, et satis tardius ad adorandum verum regem superbus miles accessi. Amen. THERE is no King but Him whom I have seen. I adore and worship Him, and for His sake, even though I be slain a thousand times, I will always be His. Torments are not able to take Christ from my mouth, nor from my heart. Bitterly do I regret that I detested His Holy Name in holy men, and came so late, like a haughty soldier, to adoring the true King. Amen.

Acts of St. Genesius, Ruinart, p 284, from Liturgical Prayer, Its History & Spirit, Fernand Cabrol, OSB, P.J. Kenedy & Sons. 1921; p373.



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