Saints Gervasius and Protasius

Feast day: June 19

Also Saints Gervase and Protase, Gervasis and Prothasis

Gervasius and Protasius are two Christian martyrs, probably from the 1st century. They are venerated as saints by the Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church.

Their parents were Saint Vitalis and Saint Valeria of Ravenna.

They were martyred at Milan in the first century. According to the Roman book of martyrs, Gervasius was flogged by order of Judge Astasius with a whip with lead bullets attached. Protasius is said to have been beheaded after being beaten with a stick.

They became famous throughout the Western Church since Ambrosius, bishop of Milan (373-397), discovered their bones under a church floor. He had their relics transferred to his new church in Milan (later Sant' Ambrogio). During the transport, a blind man miraculously healed. Many miracles happened at their grave. For example, a man who was possessed by the devil and left in the tomb of the brothers was violently hurled out because the devil could not stand against the relics. In the 12th century some relics came to Breisach (near Freiburg).

Gervasius and Protasius are the patron saints of Milan, of the German city of Breisach am Rhein and of the haymakers. They are invoked for the detection of thieves.