Today, the Church remembers Polycarp of Smyrna, Bishop and
Martyr, who was martyred on February 23, 156.
O God, the maker of heaven and earth, you gave your
venerable servant, the holy and gentle Polycarp, the boldness to confess Jesus
Christ as King and Savior and the steadfastness to die for his faith: Give us
grace, following his example, to share the cup of Christ and to rise to eternal
life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy
Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.