Who Is The Patron Saint Of Actors

Fake it till you make it: St. Genesius, patron of actors

Anyone who was involved in a Catholic high school or college theater club during the 1950s and 1960s is likely to be familiar with St. Genesius, who is known as the patron saint of actors. In the third century, during the reign of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, he is said to have worked as an actor in a number of plays. In order to get the Emperor’s approval, he played a role in which he satirized a Christian who was going to be baptized. In the middle of his presentation, Genesius was struck by the reality of what he was saying and was converted to Christianity on the spot, right there on the spot.

When he refused, he was put to death almost quickly after.

While it is believed that his bones are interred at the Church of Santa Susanna in Rome, where a cycle of frescos representing his life may be found, this has not been confirmed.

As a high school thespian, I recall thinking that the narrative of Genesius was a bit out of date.

  • “St.
  • The presentation ended with the appeal, “St.
  • In fact, it is only as I have grown in my roles as an actor and as a Christian that I have come to appreciate the significance of the Genesius fable.
  • Genesius is not just the actor’s patron saint, but also everyone else’s.
  • The many hours of preparation are dedicated to one goal: to bring my persona to life via deception.
  • As Jesus says, in order to live, we must be “born from above,” which means that we must be “born again” (John 3:3).
  • Paul instructs us to “take off the old self with its practices Replace yourself with the new self” (Col.
  • 2:5).
  • We create the appearance of Christ.
  • Genesius’ faith was reawakened as a result of his actions.
  • When I was cast in the one-man playDamien, which tells the story of the leper priest of Molokai, I was able to witness its force firsthand.

He battled the darkness around him, which included the leprosy that ravaged the islands, the horror of being expelled as a leper, and the doubts that plagued his soul, by holding fast to his beliefs that God loves each and every human being unconditionally, that life triumphs over death, and that we grow in holiness as we serve the needs of others.

  1. His focus was on Christ throughout it all, “performing his faith” in a performance that resulted in him being canonized.
  2. I walked out of the theater with a greater sense of the situation of others around us who are struggling under conditions comparable to those encountered by the lepers: disease, poverty, segregation, and isolation, among other things.
  3. I am challenged to reach out to them in the same way Damien did, to recognize the dignity of their existence.
  4. Acting Is Believing is the title of Lope de Vega’s play about St.
  5. The truth that action and faith are intricately linked is brought to light by this passage.
  6. As St.

Paul exults, “I have died, and it is Christ who has risen from the dead in my place” (Gal. 2:20). The part of a lifetime has been cast for us and Genesius, and we are thrilled. Break a leg, dude! In the August 2010 edition of U.S. Catholic, there was an item entitled (Vol. 75, No. 8, pages 47-48).

6 Saints to Get You Through the Oscars

With the Academy Awards taking place this weekend, everyone’s attention is centered on the stars, films, special effects, and snubs. We at Busted Halo have started nominating people for awards of our own. We’ve sifted through a slew of prospective candidates and reduced our choice down to the six Catholic saints who, in our opinion, best represent the spirit of award season. Our coverage will satisfy your every need, whether you’re obsessing over one particular celebrity or reveling in the red carpet drama, or rooting for a completely hopeless cause.

And the Academy Award goes to.

St. Genesius — Patron of Actors

According to legend, in the third century, Genesius was entertaining Emperor Diocletian of Rome by performing a play that satirized the Sacrament of Baptism when, ironically, he was unexpectedly converted to Christianity in the middle of his performance. Outraged, the emperor had him tortured and, after he refused to worship the pagan idols, he was executed for his refusal. Genesius is best known as the patron saint of actors, but he is also revered as the patron saint of torture victims, who, given all of the Oscar campaigning and publicity that takes place, may be one and the same.

St. Lawrence — Patron of Comedians

In 258, while Lawrence was serving as a deacon in the Church of Rome, the pagan Prefect of Rome became persuaded that the Church was concealing a large wealth, and he ordered Lawrence to bring the treasure to him within three days of his arrival. In that time, Lawrence gathered together all of the impoverished and ailing people from all across the city and delivered them to the Prefect with the words, “This is the Church’s wealth!” Lawrence was bound to an iron grill over a slow fire by the Prefect, who was enraged and sentenced him to a protracted and agonizing death.

I’ll take it.” Prospective screenwriters should take notice.

St. Vitus — Patron of Dancers

Vitus is revered as the patron saint of dancers and musicians. It was customary in the Middle Ages for people to dance in front of St. Vitus’ statue on his feast day (June 15), which was celebrated in nations including Germany and Latvia. This style of dance quickly gained popularity. Eventually, the term “Saint Vitus’ Dance” was assigned to the neurological condition Sydenham’s chorea, which is marked by jerkings of the body at random intervals in the body (also known as contemporary dance).

Vitus, who is also noted for protecting against oversleeping, among other things, would be a useful saint to have in the back of one’s mind for any celebrity who is concerned about falling asleep during the event.

St. Jude — Patron of Lost Causes and Desperate Situations

Jude is regarded as the patron saint of lost causes and dire situations since he was one of Jesus’ initial supporting figures in the Bible. Because of a letter Jude addressed to the Churches of the East, in which he advised them that the faithful must persevere even under tough times, this union was formed. Keeping those considerations in mind, consider all of the nominees who did not receive nominations or even those who did not receive nominations, and say a prayer for them to St.

Jude. If you want to be even more specific, it’s probably a good idea to pray for greater diversity among the Academy’s nominees. Indeed, a lost cause!

St. Catherine — Patroness of Fashion Design

With all of the fashion successes and tragedies that will undoubtedly be witnessed on the red carpet, it is only appropriate to pay tribute to the patron saint of fashion design. Around the year 305 A.D., St. Catherine was beheaded. Saint Catherine was canonized by Emperor Maximinus II on November 25, and many countries continue to commemorate her feast day, albeit in slightly varied ways. While there are fireworks displays and “Cattern Cakes” in Britain, the day is mostly in celebration of women in Estonia, where both genders are encouraged to dress as ladies and go door-to-door collecting presents.

Keep an eye out for outrageous attire that would be appropriate for St.

St. Bibiana — Patroness of Hangovers and Headaches

Anyone who is hosting, attending, or otherwise participating in an Oscars party may choose to say a prayer to St. Bibiana to assist them get through the morning following the big night in Hollywood. St. Bibiana is revered as the patroness of those suffering from hangovers, headaches, and other mental illnesses. Following her death, it was reported that a plant sprouted over her grave, which magically banished the conditions listed above. Inquire of Bibiana for a little assistance, and perhaps your “difficult morning” will not be too awful after all.

St. Genesius

A prayer to St. Bibiana could be beneficial for anyone who is hosting, attending, or otherwise participating in an Oscars celebration in order to get through the next day. Among other things, St. Bibiana is noted for being the patron saint of those who suffer from hangovers, migraines, and other mental illnesses. Following her burial, it was said that a herb sprouted over her grave, which magically cured her of the ailment described before. Solicit Bibiana’s assistance and perhaps your “difficult morning” will not be as dreadful as it appears at first glance.

  • Refreshments will be served at the St. Genesius Film Society in Dublin.
You might be interested:  What Saint Do You Bury To Sell Your Home

Drinks and conversation at the St Genesius Film Society in Dublin.

St. Genesius – Saints & Angels

God, the Divine Artist, has begun a vast work of love with the creation of the world and the redemption of its inhabitants. It was out of love, in love, and for love that he created the world. Everyone who lives on it has the potential to become a manifestation of His Beauty – if they react to His invitations of grace. The relationship between beauty and the Christian mission to express the presence of the living God in this world is inextricably linked. Beauty is a means of coming face to face with the God who is both its source and its summit.

  1. God, the Divine Artist, uses us as paintbrushes in His hands, and He wishes to portray his beauty through us.
  2. Art must make the world of the spirit, the world of the unseen, and the world of God visible and appealing to as many people as possible.” The late Pope provided an explanation, saying, “Beauty is a key to unlocking the mysteries of life and a summons to transcendence.
  3. As a result, the beauty of created things will never be able to completely please.
  4. It appears that you make extensive use of Catholic Online; this is excellent!
  5. If you have already made a donation, we would like to express our gratitude.
  6. With a donation of only $5.00, the cost of a cup of coffee, Catholic Online School might continue its successful operations.
  7. Now is the time to seek assistance.

He opened his letter with the following lines from the Book of Genesis: “God looked upon everything that He had created, and it was very good(Genesis 1:31).” It is still the case.

The theatre was debased and unnatural in the early years of the first Christian Millennium because human civilization itself had become debased.

One of the reasons why the narrative of St.

It also comes at an opportune moment.

As our culture drifts more away from God, it is losing sight of the inherent worth and dignity of the human person.

In order to generate fresh “epiphanies of beauty” for a new missionary age, we require contemporary Christian artists to create new “epiphanies of beauty.” The narrative of St.

The witness of his sacrifice, as well as his intercession, might serve as an inspiration for young Christian playwrights, performers, and other artists.

Genesius comes from an early Christian tradition that was validated in a seventh-century text known as the Acts of the Martyrs, which narrates his narrative and confirms what we already know about him.

During the year 303, the emperor Diocletian made a trip to Rome in order to commemorate his twenty-year reign as emperor.

According to Christian tradition, Genesius determined that the most effective way to learn the Christian way in order to write such a satirical play and act in it was to deceive members of the Christian community into believing that he wanted to enter the catechumenate and prepare for Baptism was to deceive members of the Christian community into believing that he wanted to prepare for Baptism.

  • They accepted him as a member of the catechumenate community.
  • The goal was for him to make fun of the assertion on stage in front of Diocletian.
  • He eventually dropped out of the catechumenate and declared his dissatisfaction with Christianity’s claims.
  • He hoped to gain favor with the wicked emperor and so raise his status inside the empire as a result.
  • An actor in the role of a Christian priest arrived to the ill man’s home to baptize him.
  • The Lord, on the other hand, had different ideas.
  • He came face to face with the Resurrected Jesus Christ and witnessed the reality of the Christian religion.
  • “I came here today to satisfy an earthly Emperor, but what I have done today is to please a heavenly King,” he declared firmly in his appeal to Diocletian to commit his life to Jesus Christ.
  • Believe me when I say that from this point on, I will never again make fun of these big riddles.
  • Believe in these enigmas, O glorious Emperor!

When this pious, recently baptized Christian refused to surrender his faith in Jesus Christ the Lord, he had him tortured and killed by the authorities. St. Genesius is known as the “Father of Actors.” St. Genesius, intercede on our behalf!

St. Genesius, patron of actors, comedians, clowns

Genesisus, patron saint of Actors, Comedians, clowns, dancers,theatrical performers, attorneys, barristers, lawyers, printers, stenographers
See the AnachronTMand more detailsavailable as aplaque,posterandspirit stoneandpendant. According to legend, Genesius (orGelasinusorGelasius), was the leaderof a theatrical troupe in Rome around 300 AD. When he heard that the infamous Emperor Diocletian was coming tovisit the city, he decided to produce a play that would please him by parodying the Christian faith Diocletianso detested.To find out more,clickhereor follow thelinks below.
HOMEAll images and words produced by SaintsPreservedTMare ©copyrighted and may not be reproduced, copied, downloadedor duplicated in any way without expressed permission.

St. Genesius, Patron Saint of Actors, Pray for us!

When I was in high school while performing, we had a really intricate pre-show routine that we followed. We would all congregate in our individual changing rooms (disclaimer: this is exactly what the males would do). I’m still baffled as to what the ladies did for their pre-show customs to this day) and go through a cheer that has been passed down from generation to generation since I was a freshman. Towards the end of every performance, we would invoke the patron saints of the theatre: St. Cecilia, patron saint of music; St.

  • Joseph, patron saint of carpenters/techies; and St.
  • Ignatius, who is also our patron saint.
  • As I go toward seminary, I am continuously looking for new ways to connect theatre and theology, and I draw inspiration from my Jesuit education on a consistent basis.
  • Genesius, was one that caught my attention.
  • The quote, while melodramatic, I believe it expresses something important about the nature of acting: we have a duty to speak the truth about the world, whatever that reality may be for each of us.
  • Genesius represents the fortitude it takes to tell the truth and to hold up a mirror to nature.

As I continue to investigate the complex ways in which the arts can be used in worship, I am reminded of how, when we go to the theatre, we are all hoping to have a shared experience and, hopefully, a sense of unity of some sort, and I believe that this is one of the reasons why I am still working in the theatre.

St Genesius of Rome Patron Saint of Actors/Comedians Jewelry & Gifts

When Emperor Diocletian reigned over the Roman Empire, Genesius of Rome appeared as an actor in a play that made fun of Christians. He was slain as a result of his conversion to Christianity, which occurred in the middle of the performance. The Patron Saint of Actors and Comedians is St. Genesius of Rome, who was born in the year 410. The feast day of Saint Genesius of Rome is celebrated on August 25th. In order to provide spiritual and inspiring gift giving opportunities, Heavenly Divine Rosaries sells a wide choice of high-quality Catholic patron saints, guardians, namesake jewelry, and gifts for both men and women.

Many popular patron saint medals are manufactured in the United States or Italy by companies such as Bliss Manufacture, Creed Jewelry, HMH Religious, Jeweled Cross, and Singer Company.

These medals are fantastic gifts for a variety of important events, including communion, confirmation, birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, and many others.

Saints’ Names: Patrons of the Arts — Cecilia, Clare and Celestine

Among the Catholic patron saints are those who defend against ailments ranging from compulsive gambling to gout, as well as those who guard against counties and cities, as well as those who guard against living creatures ranging from caterpillars to wolves, among other things. Particularly appealing to my interests are patronages related with various vocations, particularly those relating to the creative arts, as well as the stories that surround such patronages, which I find particularly compelling.

So, whether you’re a poet, a potter, or a photographer, you might be able to find some naming inspiration in this collection.


Barbara As a result of her tumultuous existence, which included confinement in a tower, the martyredSaintBarbara, according to Catholic tradition, provides unique protection for builders and stonemasons. CatherineCatherineof Bologna is often regarded as the most important patron saint of artists in the world. At reality, one of her surviving works, a 1456 picture of St. Ursula, is now housed in the Galleria Academia in Venice, and was painted by her as a cloistered nun in Italy. CatherineofAlexandriaprotectspottersandspinners.

  1. Why?
  2. Since 1570, her feast day, November 22, has served as a venue for concerts and music festivals, prompting poetry and music by Purcell, Handel, and other composers to be performed.
  3. What is the explanation behind this?
  4. Pelagia Pelagia During her early life, the Penitent was a gorgeous and popular actress and dancer, and she is therefore the patron saint of actresses.
  5. Veronica St.


Printing is the patron saint of printers, in honor of Augustine of Hippo, whose brilliant works are regarded as a cornerstone of Western culture. Benedict SaintBenedictof Nursia, frequently referred to as the “Father of Western Monasticism,” is the patron saint of Italian architects. His Rule included a spirit of balance, moderation, and reason, and he is considered the “Father of Western Monasticism.” Bookbinders are blessed by Pope St.Celestine, who was a voracious reader and is one of the patron saints of bookbinders.

  • (Does anyone have any information?) Columba Saint Columba, an Irish monk who lived in the sixth century, is the patron saint of poets, bookbinders, and book lovers.
  • Dunstan St.
  • It remains a question as to why he is designated as the patron saint of wind instrument musicians.
  • Eligius (remember St.
  • Francis As a result of the tracts and books he published, St.
  • Francis of Assisi, who is most known for his animal protection, is also the patron saint of lacquer and tapestry craftsmen.
  • Gabrielthe Archangel is known as the patron saint of communication and dissemination.

Genesius Originally from Rome, St.

His patronage of performers, clowns, comedians, dancers, and musicians makes perfect sense, and he is also the patron saint of epilepsy sufferers, stenographers, and torture victims.


John St.John editor, author, and art dealer are all patronized by St.

Editors are patronized by St.

Luke St.

He is also known as the patron saint of painters, sculptors, and bookbinders.

He gained reputation as a painter, metalworker, and sculptor before deciding to give his life rather than abandon his religion; he is the patron saint of sculptors and engravers.


VitusSt.Vitus was a Christian saint from the Italian island of Sicily.

Vitus by dancing in front of his statue during the late Middle Ages, which led to his being designated as the patron saint of dancers, performers, and comedians (and epileptics). It is unfortunate that the moniker “SaintVitusDance” has been applied to a neurological condition.

Genesius of Rome – OrthodoxWiki

Martyr Genesios, the actor from the city of Rome. When Emperor Diocletian persecuted Christians in the year 303 AD, an actor of considerable repute named SaintGenesius of Rome was murdered for his Christian faith. His feast day is celebrated on August 25th.


He was a talented actor, comedian, dramatist, and the leader of a troop of performers in the Roman capital of Rome. During the time of Diocletian’s great persecution, Genesius, a pagan, devised a magnificent plan to stage a play parodying the Christian sacraments in order to expose them to scorn from the assembled audience. As a result, he determined to portray Baptism, complete with all of its rites, in the most absurd manner imaginable one day. As a result, he got well familiar with the events surrounding holy Baptism, he assigned the roles for the play, and he taught the performers on what they were expected to accomplish.

As the comedy got underway, Genesius took up the role of the main character.

After they had completed this task, he expressed his belief that he was about to die and expressed his desire to become a Christian, requesting that they “baptize” him.

All of the inquiries that are posed to persons who are about to be baptized were addressed to him.

The Almighty struck Genesius’s heart with a light of divine Grace at the same instant when the pagan actors sneered and blasphemed the Holy Sacrament of the genuine Church, as the actor poured the water over his head, as the actor poured the water over his head Upon realizing the truth of Christianity, the actor underwent a complete transformation, and he boldly and fervently declared his faith in Jesus Christ on the streets of London.

His buddies, who were completely unaware of what had occurred, continued the profane ridicule.

Genesius, who had already become a sincere believer in Christ, turned to face the Emperor and the other onlookers and confessed to them with great dignity what had occurred within him.

However, it was during the sacrilegious performance that his heart was instantly altered, and he expressed a wish to convert to Christianity.

He went on to say that before they baptized him, he had seen an angel, who presented him with a book in which all of his past iniquities had been recorded, and who assured him that they would all be washed away by holy baptism, and that he had in fact seen that all of his vices had been erased from its pages, which he believed to be true.

At the conclusion of his speech, he implored the Emperor and everyone in attendance to follow in his footsteps and worship the only real God.


The Emperor and the audience quickly realized that he was no longer in the role of the Emperor. In response to his noble and candid confession, the Emperor grew outraged and issued immediate orders for the removal of his clothing, as well as for his whipping and imprisonment in front of the whole populace, followed by his execution in jail. Plautian, the prefect, was given orders to repeat this punishment on a regular basis until Genesius abandoned his new faith and offered sacrifices to the pagan gods, which he eventually did.

  • When the prefect pressed him to conform to the imperial command and offer sacrifices to the pagan gods, the holy martyr responded, “I am not willing to do so.” “Your Emperor is only a mortal man, and anybody desiring the favor of such a mortal man may approach him for it.
  • I recognize that He, who accepted me in HolyBaptism, is the actual King, and I repent for having mocked and angered Him on so many previous occasions.
  • You are free to torment me as much as you want; I will stay loyal to my God no matter what you do.
  • As a result, St.
  • When the Christians learned of Genesius’ death, they recognized that he had been converted and executed for his Christian beliefs.
  • Hippolytus on the Via Tiburtina in Rome.
  • His remains were afterwards entombed at the Church of San Giovanni della Pigna, located near the Pantheon in Rome.
  • His relics were moved to a grave in the Church of Santa Susanna in 1591, where they have remained to this day, according to tradition.

His patronage has expanded more recently to include converts, dancers, and those suffering from epilepsy.

Veracity of the Saints’ Existence

Recent scholarship has raised questions about St Genisius’s actual existence, leading some historians to question his very existence. It has been proposed that he is a Romanized version of StGenesius of Arles, a notary who perished during Diocletian’s persecution of Christians in the first century. However, despite the fact that both martyrs shared the same surname and perished during the same persecution, it is not immediately obvious that they are the same individual. There is evidence of devotion to St Genesius the actor-martyr at Rome as early as the fourth century, only a few decades after his death and during the lives of individuals who would have either known him or heard of him.

Both the presence of his tomb and the existence of a tradition of his burial in Rome provide evidence in support of the validity of the tradition of his burial in Rome.

In his book, Mémoires pour servir à l’histoire ecclésiastique des six premiers siècles, Tillemont acknowledges the validity of the Acts.


  1. St. Genesius of Arles is commemorated on March 3rd, and according to Baronius (Mem.iv. 695) he died in 285 or 286
  2. Butler’s Lives of the Saintsstates that the Martyr St. Genesius of Arles “has no connection with the wholly fictitious Genesius the Comedian,” who was formerly commemorated on the same day. A catechumen who served for the Roman ruler, St Genesius (sometimes spelled St Genès) was the subject of this story. The Emperors Maximian and Diocletian ordered the persecution of Christians in Gaul (France), and he refused to record the orders of the Emperors. After fleeing and taking refuge on the banks of the Rhône river, he was later apprehended and executed on the banks of the same river
  3. A seventh-century document, purporting to be the Acts of his martyrdom, claims that Genesius lived in Rome around 303 AD, and died as a result of the persecution of the Emperor Diocletian around the year 303 AD


  1. Cf. Anastasius Bibliothec. iv. 199
  2. MémoiresIV s. v. Genesius
  3. Anastasius Bibliothec. iv. 199
  4. Cf.


  • Rev. Francis Xavier Weninger is a Catholic priest who serves in the United States (S.J.). ” St. Genesius, Martyr “, from the book Lives of the Saints: Compiled from Authentic Sources with a Practical Instruction on the Life of Each Saint, for Every Day of the Year (Lives of the Saints: Compiled from Authentic Sources with a Practical Instruction on the Life of Each Saint, for Every Day of the Year). Volume 2 is the sequel to the first. Page numbers 254-257 in New York: P. O’Shea, Publisher, 1876
  • Rev. George Thomas Stokes (M.A.). “Genesius (1) – 25th of August.” The authors, William Smith and Henry Wace (Eds.). A Dictionary of Christian Biography, Literature, Sects, and Doctrines is a reference work for Christians. Eaba-Hermocrates is the second volume. Little, Brown and Company published the book in Boston in 1880. On page 627, you will find a list of all of the people who have contributed to this page. St. Genesius of Rome was a Roman actor and martyr who died in a fire. Franciscan Fraternity of St. Gennasius
  • F. Mershman (1909). ‘Genesius’ is a name found in: The Catholic Encyclopedia. The Robert Appleton Company is based in New York. Accessed on February 24, 2011, via New Advent and St. Genesius.Catholic Online
  • Alban Butler and Paul Burns, respectively. The Martyr Saint Genesius of Arles (c.303) is commemorated. Butler’s Lives of the Saints is an excellent resource. Continuum International Publishing Group published August, Volume 8 in a revised edition in 1998. Page 248
  • Page 249

Sources of historical information

  • Four hundred and sixty-seven martyrs were commemorated in the Martyrologium Hieronymianum and the Martyrology of Usuard, among other works. Thierry Ruinart’s Acta Sincera was published in 467. Laurentius Surius’ Vitae SS was published in 467.

St. Gensius: He posed as a Christian as a joke, but ended up a believer

It is never simple to make it in Hollywood or any other type of popular entertainment. It is a difficult skill to master when there are so many other individuals who want to achieve the same level of accomplishment. However, it is possible that the most difficult deed to accomplish is to keep your spirit focused towards God in the middle of everything. What is true today was also true throughout the time of the Roman Empire. During the 3rd century, there was an actor by the name of Genesius who was inspired by the devil’s work.

  1. He just needed to do one thing in order to complete his big plan: deceive the Christians into catechizing him.
  2. His troop of players collected promptly after learning about Baptism and headed to the theater to present his new concept in front of a large crowd, which included the emperor.
  3. On stage, an actor conducted a simulated baptism over Genesius, and Genesius was surprisingly overwhelmed by God’s love as water was poured over him and he came to see the reality of Christianity.
  4. It was my intent when I came here today to satisfy an earthly Emperor, but what I have accomplished today is to please a celestial Emperor.
  5. Believe me when I say that from this point on, I will never again make fun of these big riddles.
  6. Believe in these enigmas, O glorious Emperor!
  7. This act of faith in front of the emperor resulted in his execution, and St.
  8. “Praying for persons working in film and theater,” according to the objective of the Fraternity of St.
  9. Genesius.
  10. Genesius, martyr for Christ, through the gift of the Holy Spirit and the actions of your life, you came to understand the truth of the Christian faith, and you are grateful.
  11. Especially remember to pray for individuals who devote their lives to the performing and visual arts.

As part of this novena, I recall in particular., and I dedicate him or her to your care. More information may be found at: 5 Catholic celebrities that you may not have recognized are well-known.

The Fraternity of St Genesius

St. Genesius of Rome is a saint who lived in Rome. Martyr, actor, and writer According to an old Roman story, St Genesius was a well-known actor who was murdered for his Christian faith while performing on the stage. Genesius lived in Rome at the turn of the third and fourth centuries AD, and he was martyred during the persecution of the Emperor Diocletian in the year 303 AD, according to a seventh-century text claiming to be the Acts of His Martyrdom (Acts of His Martyrdom). Diocletian’s persecution was the most violent throughout the Roman Empire, and it took the lives of many Christians, including men, women, and children.

a painting by Giovanni Battista Pozzo entitled “The Conversion of St Genesius” A brilliant actor, comic and playwright, Genesius was described in the Acts as the leader of a group of performers who performed in a play.

Acting was not regarded to be a particularly prestigious profession at the time, and it is most probable that he was not a Roman citizen, even if he had been born in the city, because at the time performers were classified as slaves or, at the most, as laborers.

Mimes and pantomimes were the main attractions of the theatre, and they were notoriously noisy and risqué in their portrayals of the characters.

It was planned that Emperor Diocletian would travel to Rome in the summer of 303 to commemorate his twenty years in power (it would be his only visit to the city during his reign, as he despised the politicking and squalor of the city), and a number of civic and cultural events would be held to mark the occasion.

Genius was an aspirational individual, and it is possible that he had his sights set on a post within the Imperial palace at Nicomedia.

Genesius was successful in persuading members of the Christian society that he desired to become a Christian after approaching them.

As a result of his acceptance, Genesius was enrolled as a catechumen and began the time of instruction that would eventually lead to his baptism.

If he was captured in a raid, his plan may cost him his life.

After much deliberation with his masters, Genesius came to the conclusion that the sacrament would serve as the central topic of his comedy.

When he gathered his troupe of actors, he explained the plot of his farce, and they worked together to put the comedy together: The majority of Roman mimes and pantomimes were improvised.

In the end, the emperor was present at the performance, and Genesius himself directed his troupe of actors in the farce, in which he played the role of a sick man confined to his bed who was pleading for baptism with his hands raised in the air.

Genesius was suddenly struck by the grace of God as the actor poured the water over his head: he recognized the truth of Christianity and began to profess his faith in Jesus Christ.

According to the Acts, Genesius addressed the emperor personally and urged him to convert to Christianity: “I came here today to please an earthly Emperor, but what I have done is to please a heavenly King,” Genesius stated.

Believe me when I say that from this point on, I will never again make fun of these big riddles.

Believe in these enigmas, O glorious Emperor!

�The performance was stopped and Genesius and his troupe were arrested.

When persuasion failed, he was handed over to the prefect of the praetorium, Plautian, who tortured him in an effort to make him recant and offer sacrifice to the Roman gods.

After much suffering he was finally condemned to death and was beheaded.

While Genesius� mock baptism was not valid since the intention of his fellow actor was not to baptise, through his martyrdom he is considered to have been �baptized by blood�.

They managed to secure his body and buried him in the Cemetery of St Hippolytus on the Via Tiburtina with other Christian martyrs.

Pope Gregory III honoured him in 741 by beautifying his tomb and the Church.

Since ancient times, Genesius has been revered as the patron saint of actors, actresses, comedians, and all involved in the performing arts; with the birth of cinema, he has also been hailed as the patron saint of the film industry.

His feast day is celebrated on the 25th August.

It has been suggested that he is a Roman version of St Genesius of Arles (Southern France), a notary who also died in the persecution of Diocletian.

The Emperors Maximian and Diocletian ordered the persecution of Christians in Gaul (France), and he refused to record the orders of the Emperors.

While both martyrs bear the same name and died during the same persecution, one cannot immediately assume that they are the same person.

Both the existence of his tomb and a tradition of his burial in Rome also seem to argue in favour of the authenticity of the tradition.

St Genesius� Acts are also notable for their simplicity, devoid of many of the miraculous events which fanciful writers tended to embellish the Acts of many martyrs: this simplicity is also an indication of veracity.


While devotion to Genesius has not been very strong for some time, in recent years it has been growing again.

Recent publications on the saints now feature the story of his life, accepting the veracity of the tradition and the Acts. � The Fraternity of St Genesius 2007 Genesius before Diocletian Praying for those involved in cinema and theatre

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