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The only two martyrs at the Colosseum in Rome

2017-03-05

They are called Senen and Abdon, and of them we know only that, the names. They were martyred at the Colosseum in the middle of the 3rd century, and it is believed that they were from Persia.

ROSSELLA REA
Rome Colosseum
"They were two Persians who they had dedicated  a chapel to inside the Colosseum, a chapel of course that no longer exists."

The director of the Coloeum explains that other places, like the Circus Maximus, produced more martyrs. However, it was the Colosseum that became the symbol of persecution in a very concrete moment of history, during the pontificate of Benedict XIV. He established the famous tradition of performing the Way of the Cross there every Good Friday.

ROSSELLA REA
Rome Colosseum
"The tradition of doing the Via Crucis here was born when Benedict XIV consecrated the Coliseum, where we now find ourselves. They placed the Stations of the Cross on the sand and in the center they placed a great cross. Every year on Good Friday the pope celebrates the Way of the Cross here.”

Today the Via Crucis is one of the most anticipated traditions during Holy Week in Rome. The challenges of today are recalled, and the persecutions of Christians are mentioned, just as in the days of Senen and Abdon.



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