My Beloved Ones,
As today is the first of December, I wish for all of you strength for a good and blessed month. Καλό μήνα! In this month, of course we look ahead to that joyous feast of the Nativity, but the Church has also given to us the memory of two saints whose lives we are called to emulate on our way to the blessed Feast.
On December 4th, we commemorate the holy Barbara, a secret Christian whose father, Dioscorus, was a pagan. Dioscorus kept her locked away from the world in a high tower. Before leaving on a journey, he commanded that two windows be installed in his bathhouse. After his departure, Barbara asked that a third window be added, for the Holy Trinity. When he returned, his daughter confessed Christ, and Dioscorus prepared to kill her. However, her fervent prayers opened the tower wall, and Barbara escaped. Dioscorus pursued and eventually discovered his daughter, who was cast into prison and tortured. Such was the holiness of this saint however, that every morning, she would appear in perfect health. Eventually, Barbara was condemned to beheading and Dioscorus carried out the punishment himself. For the murder of his own daughter, Dioscorus was killed by a bolt of lightning. Barbara’s tomb became the site of many miracles.
Τῶν οὐρανίων στρατιῶν Ἀρχιστράτηγοι, δυσωποῦμεν ὑμᾶς ἡμεῖς οἱ ἀνάξιοι, ἵνα ταῖς ὑμῶν δεήσεσι, τειχίσητε ἡμᾶς, σκέπῃ τῶν πτερύγων, τῆς ἀΰλου ὑμῶν δόξης, φρουροῦντες ἡμᾶς προσπίπτοντας, ἐκτενῶς καὶ βοῶντας· Ἐκ τῶν κινδύνων λυτρώσασθε ἡμᾶς, ὡς Ταξιάρχαι τῶν ἄνω Δυνάμεων.