During the Great Lent is the time to remember the saints. It normally goes for women, the holy women who are the heroines of the next series of old engravings. It will help us in this book Spencer Jesse James' Women in Early Christianity: A series of portraits "(1852), which are now revered as saints in the Catholic and Orthodox churches. Biographies of some of them quite controversial, and more like a legend, but still interesting ...
The holy Abbess Kolding
Koldingemskaya Ebba, abbess, martyr. It was the abbess of a double monastery Koldingem (Coldingham), that Bervekshire, Scotland. When the monastery was attacked by the Scandinavian pirates, Ebba has gathered nuns and blessed them to save themselves from falling into pirate hands, voluntarily mutilated themselves. She gave an example of cutting off his nose and upper lip, the other nuns to do the same. When the Vikings raided the monastery, they were horrified seen and was angry that women managed in such a way to avoid abuse. The nuns were locked and burned alive.
Holy Geneviève - patroness of Paris
Holy Righteous Genevieve (Genevieve), saved in 451 Paris from invasion of the Huns. After the death of their parents, about 20 years old, she devoted herself entirely to God, escaped the bonds of marriage. Spending his life in seclusion, she kept very strict fasting, vigils, and committing fully to the gate when leaving each year for three months from the date of the Epiphany until Holy Thursday. During the invasion of the Huns under Attila the prayers of St. Genevieve (she was then 28-29 years old), Paris was saved, Attila suddenly turned sharply and walked around the side of Paris. Genevieve received from God the gift of tears, her virtues were crushed lament and repentance, compassion and love.
Cecilia in Spanish, in Italian Cecilia, virgin-martyr, which datiruetsa from 180-350 BC The oldest archive says about the end of the 2nd century, where abandoned due to her husband on their wedding night, St. Cecilia asked him to become a Christian because he was a pagan. Her husband was martyred for his faith in Christ, and Cecilia long tortured and beheaded. Before her death she called, "to sing to the Lord," which is denoted by the word "organis" in Latin. Often, the icons and paintings of great artists of St. Cecilia playing the organ depicted on Lauda, other musical instruments. She is the patroness of musicians.
Holy Martyr in March
The Holy Virgin Martyr Martha (Martha) and Mary were sisters, lived in Asia (Asia Minor), and were eager to suffer for the Lord Jesus Christ. Once passed by their house-captain of the heathen. The sisters came to him and loudly announced that they are Christians. First, the governor did not pay attention to them, but they aggressively shouted after him, repeating his confession. Then both of them were captured together with his brother - the lad Likarionom. All three men were crucified on crosses, and was present at the execution of their mother, who strengthened them in the sufferings of Christ. Sisters pierced with spears, and the young man was beheaded by the sword Likarion.
According to legend, Petronilla was the daughter of the Apostle Peter, who did not want to marry some noble Roman Flaccus. She asked me three days to think it over, they spent three days in fasting and prayer, communion and at the end of the third day she died. Daughter of Peter the Great made rumor only girl in the VI century, generally as likely that Petronilla was martyred in the persecution of 251, the catacombs of Rome in frescoes depicting the martyr Petronillu. The circumstances of her death are unknown, but the legend, of course, very interesting in itself and can serve as edification to those who are afraid of marriage: whether they can still, in fasting and prayer, to die, but would not marry.
Flavia Domitilla - it is holy, sacred to the Catholic Church as a martyr (c. 60 - after 95), wife of the consul Titus Flavius Clement, niece of the Emperor Titus Flavius Domitian, the last of the Flavian dynasty, which for the confession of an alien religion - Christianity or Judaism (Suetonius) gave Titus Flavius Clement's death in '95, and his wife were exiled to the island of Ponza in the Tyrrhenian Sea, where she died. Domitilla usually honored, along with Sts. Nereus and Ahilleem - soldiers who converted to Christianity, which underwent martyrdom during the persecution of Emperor Diocletian.
Holy Martyr Felicity
Felicity - The Roman martyr. Memory takes place in the Orthodox Church January 25 (Julian calendar), in the Catholic Church - November 23. The mother of seven sons: Iannuariya, Felix, Philip, Silvanus, Alexander, Vitali and Martial, Saint Felicity was from a wealthy Roman family. Pagan priests were accused of spreading the Christian faith, and giving away all his possessions, and with his sons, came out openly to preach Christianity. Filitsata and his sons were put to torture. Seeing the suffering of their sons, St. Felicity, prayed about, that they prevailed in the struggle before she entered the kingdom of heaven. All the sons of the saint was martyred in the eyes of the mother, after which she also suffered a martyr's death.
Martyr Potamiya died by the sword. According to other legends of the same, the martyr Potamiya decided better to be thrown into the cauldron, boiling tar, than to surrender into the hands of his master, the Gentiles to mock. Sometimes referred to mesyatseslovam ... man, the Rev. Potamiem miracle worker.
Adelaide ( Alice) of the Cistercian Order Shaerbek nun, entered the convent at the age of seven years and became famous for the ascetic life, full of disease and suffering that she has sacrificed for the salvation of souls in purgatory. Losing sight and being paralyzed, St. Alice had a profound mystical experience of communion with Christ, drawing particular solace in the sacrament of the Eucharist.
Holy Agnes, according to legend, was born in Rome, a 13-year-old received an offer to marry the son of a Roman praetor Simfroniya, captivated by her beauty and wealth, but he denied being a Christian. Since the suit and the most Simfroniya has not worked, then he ordered to bring it into the public house and there undress, then suddenly her hair grew so much that they covered as a dress, her whole body. When the son of Simfroniya wanted to commit violence upon her, he suddenly fell to the ground and blinded. Yielding to the requests of his friends, Agnes regained his sight, yet it doomed to be burned, but she left the fire unharmed. She died by the sword in 303 canonized saints, its emblem - a lamb. On the day of her memory, January 29, Pope blesses lambs wool which is made Archbishop omophorion.
St. Catherine of Alexandria
According to legend, St. Catherine was born in Alexandria, the capital of Egypt, into a noble family. Many sought her hand, but to no avail: she brought a vow of perpetual virginity to Christ. Soon broke the longest and bloody persecutions in the history of the ancient Church, the persecution of Diocletian. A special hatred for Christians showed his co-ruler Maximinus. He personally came to Alexandria to trace the execution of the imperial edicts of persecution. Catherine forced to sacrifice to pagan gods, but she has refused, confessing one God. Maximinus, struck by her beauty, gave a dispute between her and fifty pagan philosophers and rhetoricians, so they persuaded the girl to renounce their faith. But Catherine defeated their opponents, clearly proving the truth of Christianity, and led many of them to faith in Christ. She was 18 years-VER. The enraged emperor in response subjected to torture the girl: she began to castigate the ox tendons so that her whole body turned into a continuous wound, her starved, she began to break bones, placing between the gears. But Catherine's prayer for her stood an angel, and the torture wheel fell apart into pieces. At the sight of her heroism addressed several hundred soldiers and executioners. In the end, she was beheaded.
Queen Helena was the mother of Constantine I of its main achievement was the Exaltation of the Cross. In order to find the Cross of the Lord Helena in 326, went to Jerusalem. She pointed out that the Cross of the Lord is buried in the ground at the place where the heathen temple erected in honor of Venus. When Helen was broken by the order of the building and began to dig, they found three crosses, and near them a plate with the inscription "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews." To find out which of the three crosses the Savior was crucified, became in turn assign them to the deceased. From two crosses, there has been no miracle. When the third cross, the risen dead, so find out the Cross of the Savior. When people hear about a miracle, all wanted to see the Holy Cross. Then, the patriarch of Jerusalem, Macarius, and Helena were on higher ground and put (erected) cross. The people, seeing the cross of the Lord, and prayed, saying, "Lord have mercy!" In memory of this event, the Church established the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross. This festival is one of the great and celebrated on September 27.
Eudoxia was a Samaritan woman by birth. She lived in Heliopolis during the Phoenician Roman emperor Trajan (89 117 years.). Featuring a young man of rare beauty and harmony, Evdokia led a sinful life, trading in his body. Lord, wishing to save souls from eternal perdition Eudoxia, arranged so that an elderly monk named Herman visited the area where she lived Eudoxia. Herman was wont to read aloud the Scriptures, and Evdokia overheard when he read the predictions about the Second Coming of Christ and the Last Judgment.
This reading was impressed and confused by Evdokia, as she realized that it was her, sinner, awaiting sentence, as predicted in the Bible. Believing in Jesus Christ with all my heart, Eudocia was baptized, gave away all his treasures to the poor and took monastic vows in the nearest monastery.
Living many years in this monastery, Evdokia entirely devoted herself to deeds of fasting, prayer and purification of the soul. Over the years it has reached spiritual maturity, and was elevated to the Superior of their abode. In the year 152, during the reign of Antoninus, she has been martyred his righteous life. For the propagation of the Christian faith Evdokia slandered in witchcraft and deception. Without a trial, it took the place of execution and beheaded.
So the holy Evdokia for his monastic feats, for good cause, and a martyr's death earned the triple crown in the kingdom of heaven.
Holy Martyr Lydia
Holy Martyr Lydia, along with her husband Philetus and two sons, Macedonia and Feopreniem, were Christians from the city of Rome, and lived in the reign of Emperor Hadrian (117-138 AD)., Fierce persecutor of Christians. During one of the persecution, St. Lydia was captured together with his cronies, and brought in for questioning by Adrian. Unable to resist the wise answers of the holy martyrs, Adrian sent them to the court in Illyria, the captain of Amphilochius. The latter immediately ordered them to hang on the tree and whittle their bodies with knives, and then thrown into prison. At night, when the holy martyrs prayed and sang sacred hymns, an angel appeared to him and strengthened in the coming feat.
The next morning, again, the saints were brought to the tyrant who threatened them with torture and torture by many. He then commanded the boil in a copper pot with oil and brimstone thrown into the holy martyrs. But when they were thrown into the boiler immediately cooled. Struck by this miracle, Amfilohije he believed in Christ, and resolved to enter into the pot, he exclaimed: "Lord, Jesus Christ, help me." Hearing all this, the Emperor Hadrian, breathing anger and threats, arrived from Rome in Illyria, and ordered the heated pot filled with oil for seven days and then thrown into the holy martyrs. But when thrown into the cauldron of the saints, they were unharmed. After this, disgraced emperor returned to Rome, and the holy martyrs began to pray and thank God and the prayers of the soul betrayed his Lord.
Bert - a saint, whose memory of the Catholic Church celebrates the July 4, Frankish princess, who married Ethelbert, King of Kent, and contributed much to spread Christianity among the Anglo-Saxons, beginning with her husband.
Holy Hilda (614-680) was the abbess of a large monastery at Whitby in northern England in the seventh century. She was the daughter Hererika, a nephew of King Edwin of Northumbria, and, as her great-grandfather, became a Christian c. 627, after the preaching of St. Pauline York when she was 13 years old. Under the direction of St. Hilda's double monastery at Whitby became very famous. They studied the Scriptures, at least five monks of the brothers became bishops, among them St. John, Bishop Heksemsky, and St. Wilfrid, bishop of York. In Whitby, in 664, was the famous cathedral, which, inter alia, approved the method for calculating Easter. The glory of the Holy Wisdom. Hilda was so great that from near and far places of the monks and even royal guests came to her for advice. In the seven years before his death, the saint fell ill serious illness which has left it up to his death, but despite this, it is not neglected any of their duty to God and his spiritual children. She rested peacefully in God after the communion of the Holy Mysteries, and the ringing of the monastery bell was heard miraculously even Haknesse, which is located 25 miles from Whitby. There is a pious nun Beguso saw the holy soul of Hilda, the heave offerings to heaven by angels.
Edith was born in Kemsinge (Kent) in England in 961. She was the illegitimate daughter of King Edgar the Peace St. and St. Wilfrid, noble nuns, which he had stolen from the monastery Viltonskogo (Wilton). After the crime the king, under the guidance of St. Dunstan, repented for seven years and did not put on his crown. As soon as Wilfrid was able to escape from the kidnapper, she returned to his cell, where he was born Edith. My mother brought up a child in a monastery, in the innocence of the world. At the age of fifteen years, Edith decided to take holy vows. Three times she refused her proposed King Edgar abbacy in three different monasteries, preferring to remain in Wilton for pastoral care of his mother. Edita combined life and good deeds molitvennitsy, feeding the hungry, clothing naked, caring for the sick, serving the pilgrims. She founded a convent hospital, to which flocked the poor and disadvantaged. She preferred to talk with the holy lepers, rejected by the world, the company of princes and nobles. No one is leaving their homes and bread, she Edita labored in strict fasting and abstinence. Finally, the holy of different special proximity to wild animals. Before his death at the age of twenty-two years, she has erected in Wilton Church of St. Dionysius. Edita portrayed as a holy nun of royal blood, giving alms to the poor. She was also depicted with a purse, or wash the feet of the poor.