Bishop and Martyr. He was the successor of Zebinus as Bishop of Antioch in the reign of the Emperor Gordianus (238-244), being the twelfth bishop of this Oriental metropolis. During the Decian persecution (260) he made an unwavering confession of faith and was thrown into prison where he died from his sufferings. He was, therefore, venerated as a martyr. St. John Chrysostom and the "Acts of the Martyrs " relate further concerning him, that Babylas once refused an emperor, on account of his wrongdoing, permission to enter the church and had ordered him to take his place among the penitents. Chrysostom does not give the name of the emperor; the Acts mention Numerianus. It is more probably Philip the Arabian (244-249) of whom Eusebius (Hist. eccl., VI, xxxiv) reports that a bishop would not let him enter the gathering of Christians at the Easter vigil. The burial-place of St. Babylas became very celebrated. The Caesar Gallus built a new church in honor of the holy martyr at Daphne, a suburb of Antioch, and the bones of the saint were transferred to it. When after this Julian the Apostate consulted the oracle of Apollo at the temple to his god which was near by, he received no answer because of the proximity of the saint. He therefore, had the sarcophagus of the martyr taken back to its original place of burial. In the middle ages the bones of Babylas were carried to Cremona. The Latin Church keeps his feast on January 24th, the Greek Church on September 4th.
More Catholic Encyclopedia
Browse Encyclopedia by Alphabet
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Browse the Catholic Encyclopedia by Topic
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online