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Martyrs Cyricus (Quiricus) and his mother Julitta of Tarsus

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15/28 July

Through God's grace, we have relics of the Holy Martyrs Cyricus and his mother Julitta in our church, and very recently we purchased an antique Russian icon of these righteous ones. Accordingly, we have decided to print the following life of the Holy Martyrs.

Martyrs Cyricus and his mother Julitta lived in the city of Iconium, Lykaos Province, Asia Minor. Saint Julitta was a Christian descended from a noted family. She was soon left a widow to raise her three-year old son Cyricus. During the persecution of Christians ordered by Emperor Diocletian (284-305), St. Julitta, her son, and two faithful servants left the city, leaving behind her house, property and slaves. Disguised as an indigent, she at first hid in Seleucia, and then in Tarsus. There, in about 305, she was recognized, arrested, and brought for trial before Governor Alexander. Strengthened by the Lord, the saint fearlessly responded to the judge's questions and firmly confessor her faith in Christ. The governor ordered that the saint be beaten with sticks. While being tortured, Julitta repeated "I am a Christian, and will not offer sacrifice to demons." The infant Cyricus cried at seeing his mother's suffering, and strained to go to her. Governor Alexander tried to sooth him, but the child broke free and cried out "Let me go to my mother. I am a Christian." The governor threw the child form the height of the dais onto the stone steps. The child tumbled down, striking sharp corners, and expired. The mother, seeing her battered son, thanked God that He had made the infant worthy of a martyr's crown. After enduring many cruel tortures, St. Julitta was beheaded with a sword. The relics of Sts. Cyricus and Julitta were found during the reign of the Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Emperor Constantine († 337, commemorated 21 May). Not far from Constantinople, a monastery was established in honor of the martyrs, and a church dedicated to them was erected near Jerusalem. According to folk belief, people pray to Sts. Cyricus and Julitta for the welfare of the family and for children's recovery from illness.

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  • 4001 17th St. N.W.,
  • Washington, D.C., 20011

Phone  (202) 726-3000

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