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THE TWELVETH MONTH
Nehasse 15
(August 21)

IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, 
ONE GOD.  AMEN.

On this day Saint Christina, the daughter of Rubanos, became a martyr.  Her parents worshipped idols, and she herself offered incense to them according as her father had taught her.  And one day the fear of God entered her heart, and she turned herself towards the East, and she asked Him to teach her the path of the kingdom of heaven; and the Holy Spirit taught her the Faith of the Trinity.  And when her father came he said unto her, “What hath happened unto thee, O my daughter?”  And she said, “I am going to live the life of Christ.”  And her father was dismayed, and he said unto her, “What hath changed thy heart?”  And she said unto him, “I am instructed by the God of heaven”; and then her father departed, being very sad and sorrowful.  And Saint Christina rose up, and prayed to God, and straightway the angel of God came unto her, and he said unto her, “Be strong, for thou shalt be tortured by three governors.”  And then the angel of God sealed her with the seal of the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, and he gave her the Holy Mysteries.  And [she] went into the house of the idols, and broke the idols in pieces, and when her father saw her he commanded them to beat his daughter, until there went forth from her body honey instead of blood.  And they also laid her upon an iron bed, and they lighted a fire under her, but the fire did not harm her and it consumed ten thousand pagans [who were there].  And then her father commanded his servants to cast her adrift on the sea on a raft.  When she had prayed, our Lord Jesus Christ came with His angels, and baptized her, and Michael gave her, on a trident of fire, the Body and Blood of Christ, and cleansed her from the uncleanness of idols.  And that night Rubanos her father died.  And another governor, whose name was Dios, came, and he commanded the soldiers to bring Saint Christina, and to hang her on a tree, and to beat her, and to light a fire under her; and when the women saw her stripped naked they cursed the governor, and he cut off their heads with a sword.  And Christina they cast into the prison house.  And when the people saw her three thousand of them believed, and the wicked Dios died.  And there came a third governor, whose name was Julius, and he seized Saint Christina, and forced her to sacrifice to the gods, and when she cursed him he cast her into a vessel filled with boiling pitch, and lead, and wax, but this did not harm her.  And he also commanded the soldiers to cast her to the serpents, but they licked the dust at her feet, and bit the keeper of the serpents, who died.  And they also slit open and cut her breasts, and cut out her tongue, and she took the piece of her tongue, which was cut off, and cast it into the eyes of the governor, and blinded him.  And he was filled with wrath, and commanded the soldiers to cast her to the serpents; and one bit her in her heart, and one in her side, and thus she died by the Will of God; and innumerable miracles and wonders were made manifest at her grave.  Salutation to Christina, whom God baptized.  Salutation to the three thousand companions of Christina who were martyred.

Salutation to God Who helped the Apostles to be present at the burial of the Virgin.

And on this day also died Saint Marina.  This saint was the daughter of a man, who was very rich indeed, and he was a Christian; and the name of her mother was Mary.  And Marina’s mother died when she was a little girl, and her father brought her up with good teaching until she became a woman, and then he wanted to give her in marriage, and to go himself and become a monk in one of the monasteries of the desert of Scete.  And she said unto her father, “Why wouldst thou save thine own soul, and destroy mine?”  And he answered and said unto her, “What shall I do with thee, seeing that thou art a woman?”  And she said unto him, “O my father, I will take off my woman’s dress, and will put on the garb of a man”; and she rose up straightway, and shaved off the hair of her head and put on the garb of a man.  And when her father saw the strength of her will, and the earnestness wherewith she fought to carry out her will, he gave all his possessions to the poor and needy, keeping only a very little for himself, and he changed his daughter’s name from Marina to ‘Anba Marina; and then he took her with him and carried her to the desert of Scete.  And he went into a certain monastery, and dwelt in a cave with his daughter for ten years, fighting the spiritual fight, and then her father, who was an old man, died; and Saint ‘Anba Marina was left by herself, and she doubled her fasting, and prayers, and vigil.  And the abbot sent the saint, together with three monks, to the city on certain business of the monastery, and he did not know that she was a woman, but by reason of the low sound of her voice, which was due to her manifold ascetic labors, he thought that she was a young man.  And having departed with the monks, she and they lodged in a guesthouse.  And that same night there came one of the king’s soldiers and lodged in that guest house, and he saw the daughter of the master of the house, and he destroyed her virginity, and he said unto her, “When thy father shall say unto thee, ‘What hath happened unto thee?’ do thou say unto him, ‘It is the young monk ‘Anba Marina who hath destroyed my virginity.’”  And when she had conceived, and her father knew that she had done so, he asked her saying, “What hath happened unto thee, O my daughter?  Who hath destroyed thy virginity?”  And she answered and said unto him, “It is Anba Marina who hath destroyed my virginity.”  And her father rose up, and went to the monastery and began to curse the monks.  And when the abbot heard him he asked him, saying, “Who dost thou curse the monks, and dost not fear God?”  And the man told him what had happened to his daughter, and he said unto him, “Anba Marina the monk is he who hath destroyed the virginity of my daughter.”  And when the abbot heard this, he asked him questions, and the man answered believing that what he said was true.  And the abbot asked the master of the guesthouse, and said unto him, “Hide this matter, and do not bring disgrace upon the monks in the eyes of the laity.”  And then the abbot summoned ‘Anba Marina the monk, and rebuked him, and cursed him, and Saint ‘Anba Marina did not know why the abbot cursed her.  And when she knew what had happened, she wept and bowed down at the feet of the abbot, and she besought him, saying, “I am young, I have sinned, forgive me my sin”; and the abbot was furious with her, and cast her out from the monastery.  And she sat outside the door of the monastery until the daughter of the master of the guest house had brought forth her child; and the parents of the girl took the child, and brought it to ‘Anba Marina and set it down by her.  And she took the child and went over to some shepherds, who were pasturing cattle and sheep, and she begged from them, and they gave her milk, and she made the child drink it.  And she increased her fasting, and prayers, and spiritual fight, and she lived outside the gate of the monastery for three years.  Then the monks gathered together, and asked the abbot to have mercy upon ‘Anba Marina, and to bring her into the monastery; and he brought her in, and having laid heavy penalties upon her, she mingled with the monks.  And the saint used to perform very hard labors, and she boiled the lentils, and cleaned the cells, and took up the dust and ashes and carried them away and cast them outside the monastery, and fetched water; and she gave the boy to drink. And he grew up and became a monk.  And when four (?) days were fulfilled for Saint ‘Anba Marina in that monastery, she was sick for three days, and then died in peace.  And when the abbot knew that ‘Anba Marina was dead, he commanded the monks to blow a trumpet before they buried her.  And when they removed her clothing, and found that she was a woman, all the monks cried out, saying, “God have mercy upon us”; and they marveled exceedingly and glorified God, and informed the abbot what had happened.  And the abbot came and looked upon her and marveled, and he wept because of what he had done to her.  And then he sent and had the master of the guest house brought, and told him that ‘Anba Marina was a woman, and he took him in, and the master of the guest house saw and wondered; then the abbot prayed over her and they wrapped her up, weeping, and singing psalms and hymns; and when they had prayed for her blessing they buried her.  Behold now, see what happened.  God commanded a certain Satan, and he took the daughter of the master of the guesthouse, and the young man who had destroyed her virginity, and he tormented them until he brought them to her grave, where they confessed their sin before all the people.  And innumerable miracles and wonders were made manifest at her grave.  Salutation to Marina.

And on this day also Saint Laurentius became a martyr in the days of Decius Caesar.  This saint was a man in whom great confidence was placed, and he was appointed an archdeacon, and he had charge of the revenues of the archbishop.  And when the emperor had killed the archbishop because of his Christian Faith, he commanded his soldiers to bring Saint Laurentius before him, and when they had brought him, they took him into the prison house.  And the saint found there, a blind man, and he said unto him, “Wilt thou believe in the Son of the Living God?  And wilt thou be baptized in His Name, so that thine eyes may be opened?”  And the blind man said unto him, “Yes, my lord.”  Then the saint prayed over some water in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and washed his eyes therewith, and his eyes were opened, and he cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Blessed be our Lord Jesus Christ Who hath given light to mine eyes, through the prayer of His servant Laurentius.”  And when the emperor heard this, he commanded his soldiers to bring Saint Laurentius before him, and he urged him to bow down to the idols; and when he refused to do so they broke his teeth with a stone, and tore off his garments, and laid him upon an iron bed, and kept a fire burning under him until his body melted.  And the saint continued to pray to his God until he delivered up his soul into the hand of God, and the angels came to meet it, saying, “Hallelujah,” and they brought it into the heavenly Jerusalem.  Salutation to Laurentius.

Glory be to God Who is glorified in His Saints.  Amen.