During the persecution of Diocletian in the year 304, a Roman priest called Marcellinus and an exorcist named Peter were apprehended and thrown into prison.
While in prison, they zealously strengthened the other members in prison with them and made new converts one whom was their jailer Arthemius together with his wife and daughter.
They were all condemned to death. Marcellinus and Peter were led to a wood called Silva Nigra, where they were beheaded in secret so that their place of burial will not be known.
But an irony of Divine Providence, their names which were doomed to oblivion have been inserted in the Roman Canon, which is Eucharistic Prayer I at Mass where they have been perpetuated over the centuries.
Pope Damasus composed an epitaph for the tomb of these two martyrs and stated that he learned about them from their executioner who had subsequently become a Christian.
Compiled by Elvira Kudiabor