The Holy Martyrs Menas, Hermogenes and Eugraphus
Both Menas and Hermogenes were born in Athens. They both lived in Constantinople, where they enjoyed the high favour of the Emperor and the honour of the people. Menas was known for his great learning and gift of speech and, although he acted outwardly as a pagan, he was in his heart a convinced Christian. Hermogenes was Eparch of Constantinople, and was a pagan through and through. He was, however, a merciful man and performed many good deeds. When dissention broke out between the Christians and the pagans in the city of Alexandria, the Emperor Maximian (285305) sent Menas to calm the turmoil and drive the Christians from the city. Menas went and restored peace, but he also declared himself to be a Christian and brought many of the pagans to the true Faith by the power of his words and the witness of his many miracles. When the Emperor heard this, he sent Hermogenes to punish Menas and to liquidate the Christians. Hermogenes brought Menas to trial, and he cut off his feet and his tongue, gouged out his eyes and then threw him into prison. The Lord Jesus himself appeared to him there, to heal and console His suffering servant. When he saw Menas miraculously healed, Hermogenes was baptised and began to preach the mighty Faith of Christ, being made Bishop of Alexandria. Then the furious Emperor Maximian came himself to Alexandria and put Menas and Hermogenes to harsh torture, which they endured courageously with the help of God"s grace. Beholding the fortitude of these soldiers of Christ and the miracles God wrought upon them, Eugraphus, Menas"s secretary, went into the judgement-hall and shouted to the Emperor"s face: "I too am a Christian!" The Emperor flew into a rage, took a sword and beheaded Eugraphus himself, and then he commanded the executioner to behead Menas and Hermogenes. Their holy relics, thrown into the sea, floated in a miraculous way to Constantinople, where the bishop, forewarned in a dream, met them with great ceremony and buried them with honour.
Our Holy Mother Angelina and St John the Despot
The daughter of Prince George Skenderbeg of Albania and the wife of Stephen, Despot of Serbia and son of Despot George, she endured exile with her husband and shared with him all the vicissitudes of life in Serbia, and also in Albania and Italy. She brought up her two sons, Maxim and John, in a truly Christian spirit. Becoming a nun on her husband"s death. she devoted herself to prayer, works of charity and the building and repair of churches. A faithful wife, a good mother and a perfect Christian, she indeed merited the title "Mother Angelina" given her by the people. Her wonderworking relics are preserved, along with the relics of her righteous husband Stephen and her devoted sons Maxim and John, in the monastery of Krusedol, though some of them were destroyed by the Turks. She entered into rest and into life eternal at the beginning of the sixteenth century.
The Holy Martyr Gemellus
An honoured citizen of Ancyra, Gemellus appeared before the Emperor Julian the Apostate when he visited the city, and openly reproached him for his apostasy. For this, he was tortured and crucified in the year 361. While he was enduring his passion on the cross, a voice was heard from heaven: "Blessed art thou, Gemellus!"
Our Holy Father Thomas of Bithynia
A great faster, a conqueror of demons and a seer, he once received a letter from the Emperor Leo the Wise, and replied without opening it. He entered into rest in the Lord in great old age, in the ninth century.
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