PriestMartyr Artemon of Laodicea. www.pravoslavie.ru
The main church holidays, the days of memory of saints and Orthodox shrines of today
26 April (13 April to "the old style" – the church Julian calendar). Thursday the 3rd (holy myrrh-bearers) on Easter Sunday (the third week after the Bright Resurrection of Christ). There is no post. Today, the memory of four famous Christian saints is commemorated. We will briefly describe them.
Hieromartyr Artemon of Laodicea. Early Christian saintly sufferer III – the beginning of the IV century, priest of the Church of Christ, who dedicated church service almost all his life. At the age of sixteen, the future priest-martyr became a reader, serving in this initial church rite for 12 years, after which he was ordained deacon, and after another 28 years into the presbyters (priests).
The Lord gave Father Artemon a long 33-year pastoral ministry and an opportunity to convert many Laodicean pagans to Christ, who, thanks to the enlightenment and preaching work of the priest, were zealous Christians. And already in a very old age priest Artemon was honored with a martyr’s crown. This happened during the period of the most severe anti-Christian persecution of the emperor-pagan Diocletian (Diocletian), who reigned in the Roman Empire in 284-305 years from the Nativity of Christ. Here is how the feat of the martyr Artemon in his Life is described:
The emperor issued a decree that all Christians should sacrifice to idols. Sainted Sisinius (friend and mentor of the priest Artemon), having learned about the imminent arrival in the Laodicean region of the patriarchal commander, together with Father Artemon, entered the temple of the goddess Artemis. There they smashed and burned idols. Then the holy elders gathered the flock in the church and ardently persuaded Christians to remain firm in the faith and not be afraid of the threats of the tormentors".
Subsequently, the Elders suffered a lot of suffering, accompanied by many miracles, which led to the True Faith of many pagans. Hieromartyr Artemon tried to boil in a cauldron with boiling tar, but two Angels in the form of eagles overturned the torturer into the cauldron. As a result, the saint found freedom and was miraculously transferred to the village, where he converted many more pagans to Christ, after which he nevertheless acquired a martyr’s crown from the haters of Christianity who seized the sufferer and cut off his honest head. This happened in 303 year from the Nativity of Christ.
The Martyr Criscent is a Mirlikian. www.pravoslavie.ru
Martyr Criscent of Myra. Holy sufferer III centuries, who took the martyr’s crown for his faithfulness to Christ and His Church in those very lands that the great Christian saint spiritually nourished a little later – St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Lycia.
Holy Truth: Overcoming lust
The Martyr of Thomas the Alexandrian. Egyptian saint V centuries, died in 476 year from the Nativity of Christ from the hands of his own father-in-law, blinded from fornication. This is what we know about this from the Life of the sufferer herself: "The father-in-law of St. Thomas, at the instigation of the devil, was captivated by her beauty. When his son left for fishing at night, he began to incline his daughter-in-law to sin. In vain, Saint Fomaid admonished the distraught old man, reminding him of the Last Judgment and of the punishment for sin. Furious with the firmness of Saint Thomas, he grabbed his sword in madness and threatened her with death. But Saint Fomaida firmly replied: "If you even cut me in two, I will not depart from the commandment of the Lord". Blinded by passion, the father-in-law waved his sword and cut through the holy Fomaid. The saint accepted a martyr’s death for her chastity and faithfulness to the commandment of God".
The Martyr of Thomas of Alexandria. www.pravoslavie.ru
The Monk Martyr Martha (Testova). The nun Martha, a venerable of the famous Seraphim-Diveevo monastery, was arrested by the God-fighters during the so-called "Great Terror" in the bloody 1937. Exhausted by illnesses and labor, she died in a camp hospital April 26, 1941. Glorified in the face of the saints in the many thousands of new martyrs and confessors of the Russian Church.
Congratulations to Orthodox Christians with the memory of today’s saints! Those who, in the Sacrament of Holy Baptism or monastic vows were given names in honor of these saints of God, are happy to congratulate them on the name day! As they said in old times: "Angels to the Guardians are a crown of wickedness, and to you – good health!"
Christ is Risen!