To be Christian and to serve in the armed forces is not to agree with everything that the chain of command does.
Accordingly…they sent to Maximian this message…‘We are your soldiers, O emperor, but God’s servants….We owe military service to you, but just living to Him….No way can we follow an emperor in this, a command for us to deny God our Father, especially since our Father is your God and Father whether you like it or not….When Maximian heard these things and realized that the men’s minds were resolute in their faith in Christ…he decreed in one sentence that they were all to be killed and ordered the surrounding military columns to effect the matter….(the other legions) drew their wicked swords against the holy men who did not refuse to die….they were indiscriminately slaughtered by the sword. They did not cry out even or fight back, but laid aside their arms and offered their necks to their persecutors…remembering this alone, that they were confessing Him who was led to His death without a cry, and like a lamb, did not open His mouth, they, the Lord’s flock of sheep, so to speak, also allowed themselves to be torn by the onrushing wolves, as it were….The earth there was covered by the bodies of the pious as they fell forward into death. ….I, Eucherius, have sent this written account of the passion of our martyrs…for I was afraid, through neglect, time should remove from the memory of men this account of so glorious a martyrdom….I have sought the truth of this very matter from suitable sources…from the holy Isaac, Bishop of Geneva, who had learned these things in turn from the most blessed Bishop Theodore, a man of an earlier time….I offer these writings of mine, if they are deemed worthy of support.
-- From Eucherius to the Lord Holy and Most Blessed Bishop in Christ, Salvius (Bishop of Octodurum)
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