The Legendary Acts of these martyrs state that they were the servants of Flavia Domitilla, a niece of the Emperors Titus and Domitian. Flavia Domitilla, herself , became a Christian. They further tell us that she was banished to the island of Pontia and was martyred at Terracina with Nereus and Achilleus.
St. Pancras was a Phrygian of noble birth who was baptized at the age of 14 and gave all his possessions to the poor. This drew the attention of the authorities. When he refused to renounce his Christian faith, he was decapitated under Diocletian about A.D. 304.
Collect of the Day
O Almighty God, who didst give to
thy servants Nereus and Achilleus boldness to confess the Name of our
Savior Jesus Christ before the rulers of this world, and courage to die
for this faith: Grant that we may always be ready to give a reason for
the hope that is in us, and to suffer gladly for the sake of the same
our LordJesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy
Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Commemoration of Pancras, martyr
O Almighty God, by whose grace and power thy holy martyr Pancras
triumphed over suffering and was faithful even unto death: Grant us, who
now remember him with thanksgiving, to be so faithful in our witness to
thee in this world, that we may receive with him the crown of life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the
Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
The painting below depicts Flavia Domitilla with Nereus and Achilleus.