Saint Theophanis the Martyr

4 November 2011

When St Theophanis the Martyr was still a layman, he had, in order to escape the rage of the Turks, denied his faith in Christ and had become a Muslim. After a while, however, he had become conscious of the sin he had committed and, in order to atone for it, he became a monk at the Monastery of Vatopaidi, doing severe penance with fasting and prayer. But since, in spite of all this, his conscience still accused him of his apostacy, he decided to confess Christ publicly and to wipe out his grave sin by the shedding of his blood. He therefore went to Constantinople, to the place he had frequented as a Muslim, and cried aloud that he was a Christian and wished to die as a Christian. The Turks arrested him, beat him mercilessly, and subjected him to severe torture, with the aim that he should again deny his faith in Christ. The Saint, however, suffered all this with fortitude and gratitude for the love of Christ. The Turks, seeing the firmness of his conviction, delivered him to a martyr’s death on 8 June 1559. His feast day is observed on 8 June11.