St. Julia, Virgin and Martyr of Corsica

St. Julia, Martyr St. Julia, Martyr   (© Musei Vaticani)

Virgin and martyr      

In Corsica, Saint Julia the Virgin, through the agony of the Cross, obtained the crown of Glory. A Christian of Carthaginian origin, sold as a slave, the ship carrying her would have called to port at Nonza. It is there that, in hatred of faith, she would have be tortured and crucified in 303, though the precise date is uncertain. She has always been venerated with fervor.

Sold as a slave

At the time when Carthage was attacked, Saint Julia was bought by a man named Eusebius. Her master, though he was a pagan, admired the courage with which the woman went about her work. When she finished her tasks, she was allowed to rest, and devoted herself to reading, or gathered herself in prayer. Moved by the love of God, she fasted frequently, and her master never succeeded in making her stop fasting on a single day, save for the Sunday of the Resurrection.

Tortured and crucified

When her master's ship was in the port of Cap Corse, where Eusebius had attended a pagan feast, he was put to sleep by the pagans, who took advantage of the occasion to kidnap Julia, who was also on the ship. She refused to deny Christ. “My freedom is to serve Christ,” she said, “whom I love every day in all the purity of my soul.” Julia was tortured, then scourged. However, in the midst of these torments, the Saint continued to confess her faith with ever greater ardor. “I confess Him,” she cried, “who for love for me has endured the torment of the flagellation. For if my Lord was crowned with thorns for me, was nailed to the tree of the Cross, wherefore ought I refuse to let my hair be torn from my head as price for the confession of my faith, that I might be worthy to seize the palm of martyrdom?” Saint Julia died by crucifixion.