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The Roman widow, St. Wisdom, and her three daughters are said to have suffered for the Faith under the Emperor Hadrian. According to spurious legend, St. Faith, age 12, was scourged, thrown into boiling pitch, taken out alive, and beheaded; St. Hope, age 10, and St. Charity, age 9, being unhurt in a furnace, were also beheaded; and their mother, St. Wisdom, suffered while praying over the bodies of her children. There is reference to two groups; a family martyred under Hadrian and buried on the Aurelian Way, where their tomb under the church of St. Pancras was afterward resorted to; their names were Greek, Sophia, Pistis, Elpis and Agape; and another group of martyrs of an unknown date, Sapientia, Fides. Spes and Caritas, buried in the cemetery of St. Callistus on the Appian Way. The Roman Martyrology names Faith, Hope, and Charity on August 1, and their mother (of whose martyrdom it says nothing) on September 30th. The great church of St. Sophia at Constantinople has nothing to do with this saint or with any other of her name; it is dedicated in honor of the Holy Wisdom, that is, to Christ as the Word of God.
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By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)
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