Sts. Cosmas and Damian are names you may recognize from the Eucharistic Prayers in the Liturgy and the Litany of Saints. They are among a very few that have such an honor, and like the other Saints mentioned, they are from the very earliest years of the faith. They are recorded as being martyred around the year 287 during the persecutions under Diocletian. They were crucified, then beaten and finally beheaded.
Cosmas and Damian were twin brothers who were also physicians. They provided their services accepting no payment, which is what the term “Unmercenary” refers to. Not only did this do much to attract people to the Christian faith, but it also landed them as the patron saints of surgeons and physicians. They are also patrons, of dentists, child protectors, barbers and against the plague.
“In communion with the whole Church, they venerate above all others the memory of the glorious ever-virgin Mary, Mother of our God and Lord, Jesus Christ, then of blessed Joseph, husband of the Virgin, your blessed Apostles and Martyrs, Peter and Paul, Andrew, James, John, Thomas, James, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Simon and Jude: Linus, Cletus, Clement, Sixtus, Cornelius, Cyprian, Laurence, Chrysogonus, John and Paul, Cosmas and Damian and all your Saints: grant through their merits and prayers that in all things we may be defended by the help of your protection.”
From the Communicantes