The Holy Martyrs of Crete - Theodulus, Saturninus, Euporus, Gelasius, Eunician, Zoticus, Pompius, Agathopus, Basilides and Evaristus - were from different towns and villages scattered across the Greek island. During the reign of the Roman Emperor Decius, a fierce persecutor of Christians, they suffered brutal torture and died as martyrs for their faith in Christ.
Unbelievers brought them before the Roman prefect of Crete. All were made to stand before the Pagan idols and pay tribute to them. When they refused, they were put to brutal torture. Every day for thirty days, they were mocked, slapped in the face and dragged around in manure. Finally, they were sentenced to dismemberment and beheading, becoming martyrs for Christ. A church dedicated to them was built at the place of their martyrdom, and multiple miracles were recorded in later years involving their relics.
In the latter half of the 19th century, the people of the village named in honour of the ten martyrs built an artificial lake. Every day, they drove cattle to its banks to feed them, and with time, the water in the lake was growing dirtier and acquired a foul smell. With time, however, the people began to notice that the water had improved and acquired healing powers.
In 1898, a young shepherd from the village became ill. His condition was deteriorating, and at some point, he was unable to walk. He invoked the names of the ten martyrs in his prayers. They came to him in a vision and instructed him to bathe in the lake and be healed. He followed the advice of the saints and recovered his health. Eventually, the relics of the saints were discovered at the bottom of the lake. Since then, it has been known across Crete and received the name holy.
Saint Varus' life teaches us the power of unwavering faith. He shows that our life in this world is only a fleeting moment of transition to eternity and that worldly honours and comforts are worthless compared to our everlasting salvation.
The courage of the Holy Royal Martyrs, their mercy, steadfast faith and readiness to entrust their fate to the Lord softened the hearts of many and showed the way of the Lord to the generations to come.
Saint Seraphim’s life was marked by various signs and wonders testifying to his election from very early in life. At the age of seven Prokhor Moshnin (the birth name of the saint) fell from a tall bell tower but God delivered him unharmed.
This week, we are preparing to celebrate the feast day of Saint Mary Magdalene, a dedicated disciple of Jesus Christ, the first to witness the resurrection of Christ and sent by Him to proclaim the news to the world.
Saint Elisabeth Convent invites you to celebrate the feast of Saint Seraphim of Sarov - a very important figure in the Orthodox Church on the 1st August. Venerable Seraphim of Sarov (Prokhor Moshnin) was born on July 30, 1754, in Kursk.
On August 4, we commemorate Mary Magdalene, the Holy Myrrh-bearer Equal of the Apostles, in the Belarussian Orthodox Church. There is so much one can learn from the life of this strong, devoted and brave woman.
Saint Spyridon, much like our grandfather in heaven, is praying for us so we are not in need. He responds to our daily concerns and looks kindly upon us, even when we act up and do mischief.
The holy martyrs, Faith, Hope, Love and their mother Sophia, are revered throughout the world. They lived in Rome in the 2nd century. When Sophia was left a widow, she devoted her life to raising her three daughters, naming them Faith, Hope…