Friday, December 21, 2012
Stop Me If You've Heard This One...
A young Christian maiden was engaged to a pagan in an arranged marriage, out of fidelity to Christ she refused to marry him, she was killed for being a Christian, and is venerated as a virgin-martyr. This time the girl is St. Juliana, whose day it is in the Byzantine Rite. She was from Nicomedia and at a young age realized that paganism is a delusion and was secretly baptized. She was betrothed to a pagan named Elusius, whom she refused to marry because he wasn't a member of the Church. Her father ordered her to marry him, but she remained faithful to Christ, for which she was severely beaten by her father.
When that was of no avail, her father handed her over to the pagan Elusius, who pleaded with her to marry him, even promising that he would let her remain Christian. She was unmoved (and indeed such promises of respecting the Christian spouse's religion are rarely ever kept, even today). He had her arrested and beaten severely in front of large crowds for being faithful to the Church. She remained faithful and was beaten repeatedly, each time being miraculously healed of her wounds. Eventually, Elusius gave up and had her beheaded in 304. 500 men and 150 women that witnessed her passion were converted by it and likewise martyred, baptized in their own blood.