|St. Kalliopi (Feast Day - June 8)|
Looking beyond the beauty of what is made,
Kalliopi beholds the beauty of the Lord.
Saint Kalliopi, whose name means "beautiful-voiced," lived during the reign of Emperor Decius (249-251), though her homeland is unknown to us. In 250, the holy virgin, who was beautiful both physically and spiritually, was arrested by pagans due to the persecution of Christians, who wanted to force her to renounce her faith in Christ.
Having no intention to deny her love for Christ, she confessed her faith, and in return they beat her mercilessly and had her breasts severed. However, an angel of the Lord visited the Lord's servant and healed her. Afterwards, those possessed with idol-madness dragged her body over broken tiles and then burned her with fire. Following this torment they sprinkled salt over her wounds and rubbed her down with a coarse hair-cloth.
Finally, they beheaded the holy martyr, and Kalliopi, the faithful servant of the Lord, ascended into the heavens, bearing the prize of the contest in the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Apolytikion in the First Tone
Having loved the beauty of the Savior from your soul, O comely-virgin lady, O all-praised Kalliopi, you struggled steadfastly on His behalf, and were made worthy of divine glory. Because of this, we honor your holy memory and cry out to you: Glory to Him Who gave you strength, Glory to Him Who crowned you, Glory to Him Who grants to us, through you, remission of offenses.
Kontakion in the Second Tone
Shining with the grace of virginity, you offered yourself to Christ in martyrdom, Whose joy you received that surpasses every mind, O all-famed Kalliopi; intercede on behalf of those who honor you.
Being truly beautiful in form, O virgin, you were shown to be beautiful and spotless in soul by Christ the King of the heavens, not having spot or wrinkle, but being aflame with divine love, with the fragrance of purity as from the wondrous incense, and having angelic purity in your heart. Therefore being betrothed to your immortal Bridegroom, you struggled astonishingly for Him, and were steadfast amidst many pains, and trampled upon the ancient enemy. And you ever partake of the joy of your Bridegroom, O all-famed Kalliopi; intercede on behalf of those who honor you.
Shining with spiritual beauty of soul, you were shown fair and beautiful to the Savior through your martyric struggles, O godly-minded Kalliopi, intercede that those who praise you may be saved.