The Great Martyr Parasceva of Iconium was born into a wealthy family of devout Christians. The name Paraskeva translates as “Friday”, and the parents gave it to their daughter in commemoration of the Friday of Christ’s passions on the eve of His death on the cross. Since her childhood, Parasceva dedicated herself to the service of God. She took a vow of celibacy and promised to God to spend her whole life educating Pagans about the true faith.
Unprepared to receive the word of God, many Pagans met her preaching with hostility. They seized her and delivered her to the Roman authorities. The prefect of her city demanded of her to make a sacrifice to a Pagan godhead. Parasceva refused and endured bitter torments. Her executioners stripped her of her clothes, tied her to a tree and tore her skin with iron claws, beating her with rods. But immediately, the Lord healed her wounds by the power of His grace. Nevertheless, the executioners persisted, and finally, they cut off her head.
The Orthodox revere Saint Parasceva as a protectress of crops and cattle. They invoke her name in their prayers for the healing of the sick, in body and spirit.
The spiritual message of the icon revealed itself with time. It promises eventual forgiveness to the Russian people and the return of the supreme power from the Holy Theotokos after a long period of suffering and repentance.
On February 6th the Belarussian Orthodox Church will celebrate the feast day of Saint Xenia of Petersburg. This article will tell you about the life of St Xenia and explain the term “Fool-for-Christ''.
We celebrate two Patron Saint days this month, the Holy Royal Martyrs on July 17 and the Convent’s Heavenly intercessor - Saint Elisabeth the New Martyr on July 18.
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.
On the 11th of September, the Orthodox Christians that follow the Julian calendar commemorate Saint John the Forerunner by celebrating the feast day of his Martyrdom. John the Baptist, the cousin of Jesus Christ.
The Belarusian Orthodox Church is glorified by the names of many local saints. February 6 is the Feast day of not only the Blessed Xenia of St Petersburg, but also of another prominent saint, almost her contemporary, Blessed Eldress Valentina…
Saints Anthony and Theodosius of the Kiev Caves lived in the 11th century. They are commonly regarded as the founders of monasticism in Ancient Rus’, the cradle of today's Russia, Belarus and Ukraine.