Monday of Week IV of Lent

This 4th-century Basilica of the Four Holy Crowned Martyrs was dedicated to four Roman soldiers: Carpophorus, Severianus, Severius and Victorius. They refused to honour a statue of the god of Aesculapius and were sent to death by Emperor Diocletian (284-305).

A 9th-century Carolingian-style church was built over this site of a 4th-century church, one of the first twenty-five parishes of Rome. A fortress was built around the church by Pope Innocent IV. A monastery was constructed adjoining the church in the 11th century. The apse contains the frescoes of the 4 martyrs. The skull of St. Sebastian can also be found in this church. Today, the Augustinians have been serving the church since 1564.

It is only a short walk of 200 metres up the hill from the magnificent Basilica of St. Clement, halfway between the Colosseum and the Basilica of St. John Lateran.

The Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony has been the Cardinal-Priest of the titular church since 1991. He retired one year ago and the Mexican-born José Horacio Góme succeeded him to the largest see in the United States, a sign of the emerging Hispanic prominence in the Catholic presence in the country.

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