Commemorated on April 16
The Holy Martyr
Michael Burliotes was born in about the year 1754 into a farm family. the
boy was raised piously, but his character was flawed.
The handsome and
ruddy youth caught the attention of the owner of a coffee-house in the city of
Smyrna. The Turk flattered him and urged him to accept Mahometanism, so as to
work at the coffee-house. The youth consented and with delight he began his
employment. But then came Holy Pascha, and he heard the triumphant song of
Christians: "Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death,
and upon those in the tomb bestowing life!" With all his soul he sensed,
that he also – was of Christ, that the Lord was summoning him into His joy,
and the youth went down to the singers, but he heard reproaches for his
apostasy. "Tomorrow ye will see, what I am", – he said sadly to the
He immediately set
off to the Mussulman judge and asked, whether it was lawful to barter in
exchange swine for gold? If the barter exchange were made by deceit, then could
the defrauded take back the gold? "Both possible and lawful", –
answered the Mahometan judge. "If that is so, – said Saint Michael, –
take back thine swine which thou didst give me for gold, – take back thine
faith and return me my gold – the faith of my fathers". After these words
the martyr openly confessed Jesus Christ as the True God, the Judge of both the
living and the dead.
The Turks locked up
the confessor in prison, and after two days they cut off his head (+ 1772). His
body lay for three days without burial and remained without decay. The Turks
threw it into the sea, but sailors took up the body and buried it at the church
of Saint Photinia.
© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.