|St. Susanna of Georgia (Feast Day - August 28)|
By Protopresbyter Fr. George Papavarnavas
Saint Susanna, or Shushanik as she she was affectionately called, lived in the fifth century. She was from Iberia, known today as Georgia, and the king at the time was Vakhtang I Gorgasali. Shushanik's husband, Varsken, was a feudal lord (pitiakhsh) of Kartli in Georgia. He was a Christian, but only by name. Eventually, he denied his faith and for no special reason subjected himself to the king of Persia and embraced the fire-worshiping faith of the Persians. He also asked his wife, who was a woman of God, to deny her faith. She rebuked him for his apostasy and then boldly confessed her faith in the true God. He then had her harshly tortured in an unforgiving way, and full of wounds she was cast into prison, which was a sunless dungeon. There the Saint spent the last six years of her life with patience, fasting and prayer.