The Holy Martyrs Peter, Dionysios, Andrew, Paul, Christina

Commemorated on May 18

      The Holy Martyrs Peter, Dionysios, Andrew, Paul, Christina suffered under emperor Decius (249-251). The first of them, the youth Peter, suffered in the city of Lampsaka (Hellispontum). Brought to trial before the governor Optimines, he bravely confessed his faith in Christ. They tried to force the youth to recant from the Lord and worship the idol-goddess Venus, but the martyr refused to do their bidding, and declared for everyone to hear, that a Christian would not bow to the idol of a lecherous woman. Saint Peter was subjected to fierce tortures, but he courageously endured the tortures, giving thanks to the Lord Jesus Christ for having bestowed upon him His all-powerful help, and he was then beheaded. Also at this time there were brought to trial Dionysios, Nicomakhos and two soldiers, transferred from Mesopotamia, and also Andrew and Paul. They all confessed their faith in Christ and refused to offer sacrifice to idols, for which reason they were given over to torture. To the great sorrow of all the Christians Nicomakhos did not hold out and he apostacised from the Lord Jesus Christ; he went into the pagan temple and offered sacrifice. He immediately fell down in a terrible frenzy and died among the frightened torturers. The renunciation of Nicomakhos was heard by the 16 year old girl Christina, standing in the crowd, who shouted: "Thou cursed and lost man! Here instead of only one hour thou hast obtained for thyself eternal and ineffable torment!" The governor heard these words. He gave orders to seize the holy virgin and, learning from her that she was a Christian, he gave her over to shameless profligates. At the house, where they had taken the holy virgin, there appeared an Angel. Frightened by his terrible visage, the youths with tears began to beg forgiveness of the holy virgin and besought her to pray for them, so that the Lord's chastisement might not befall them.
      On the following morning, Saints Dionysios, Andrew and Paul were again brought before the governor. For confessing faith in Christ they were given over to the throng of pagans for rending asunder. They bound the saints by the feet, dragged them to the place of execution and there stoned them to death. During the time of execution, Saint Christina came running up so as to die together with the martyrs, but by order of the governor she was beheaded.

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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