Dec. 23 The Holy Ten Martyrs of Crete

Bulletin as of December 22 2023

The Ten Holy Martyrs of Crete: Theodulus, Saturninus, Euporus, Gelasius, Eunician, Zoticus, Pompous, Agathopus, Basilides, and Evaristus suffered for Christ during the 3rd century under the emperor Decius (249-251). The governor of Crete fiercely persecuted the Church, and arrested anyone who believed in Christ. Once, ten Christians were brought before him from various cities of Crete, who at their trial steadfastly confessed their faith in Christ and refused to worship idols. For 30 days they were subjected to cruel tortures, and with the help of God they all persevered, glorying God. Before their death they prayed that the Lord would enlighten their torturers with the light of the true Faith. Since pain did not influence the saints, they were beheaded. 



We honor Crete of many wonders from which these precious flowers have shone forth, pearls of Christ and offspring of martyrs. Although these blessed only numbered ten, they overcame the idolatrous nation. Therefore, these brave souls were given crowns.



The noble struggle of the martyrs shines forth like the morning star and sheds brilliant light for us on the One who was born in a cave, to whom the Virgin has given birth without human seed.



Galatians 3: 8-12

Brothers and sisters: Because Scripture saw in advance that God’s way of justifying the Gentiles would be through faith, it foretold this good news ro Abraham: “All nations shall be blessed in you.” Thus it is that all who believe are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.

All  who depend on observance of the law, on the other hand, are under a curse. It is written, “Cursed is he who does not abide by everything written in the book of the law and carry it out.” It should be obvious that no one is justified in God’s sight by the law, for “the just man shall live by faith.” But the law does not depend on faith. Its terms are: “Whoever does these things shall live by them.”



Luke 13: 19-29

The Lord told this parable: “The reign of God is like a mustard seed which a man took and planted in his garden. It grew and became a large shrub and the birds of the sir nested in its branches.”

Jesus went on: “To what shall I compare the reign of God? It is like yeast which a woman took to knead into three measures of flour until the whole mass of dough began to rise.”

He went through cities and towns teaching– all the while making his way toward Jerusalem. Someone asked him, “Lord, are they few in number who are to be saved?” Jesus replied: “Try to come in through the narrow door. Many, I tell you, will try to enter and be unable. When once the master of the house has risen to lock the door and you stand outside knocking and saying, ‘Sir, open for us,’ he will say in reply, ‘I do not know where you come from.’ Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your company. You taught in our streets.’ But he will answer, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Away from me, you evil-doers!’

“There will be wailing and grinding of teeth when you see Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the prophets safe in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves rejected. People will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and will take their place at the feast in the kingdom of God.”


Icon courtesy of Jack Figel, Eastern Christian Publications –

Friday, December 22 –

  • 5:00 PM