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November 2, 2010

The Translation of the Relics of Saint George to Lydda (St. Nikolai Velimirovich)

The Translation of the Relics and Dedication of the Temple of St. George in Lydda 
(Feast Day - November 3)

                                                             By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

On this day we commemorate the translation of the relics of St. George, from Nicomedia, where he suffered at the time of Emperor Diocletian, to the city of Lydda in Palestine. The suffering of this wonderful Saint is described on April 23.

Anticipating his martyrdom, St. George begged his servant to take his relics to Palestine, where his mother had been born, and where he had distributed his large estate to the poor. The servant did so. During the reign of Emperor Constantine, pious Christians built a beautiful church to St. George in Lydda and, upon the consecration of that church, the relics of the Saint were interred there. Innumerable miracles have occurred from these miracle-working relics of St. George, the Great-Martyr of Christ.

See also: Saint George Resource Page

A Miracle of St. George the Great Martyr

Among the countless miracles of St. George, this one is recorded:

On the island of Mytilene there was a church dedicated to St. George the Great Martyr and Trophy-bearer. All the inhabitants of the island would come to this church on the annual feast of their patron saint.

Knowing of this, the Saracens of Crete once attacked this island on its feast day, pillaged the island, and enslaved its inhabitants, taking many of them back to Crete. Among the enslaved was a handsome young man, whom the pirates gave to their prince. The prince made him his servant. The young man's parents were overwhelmed with great sorrow for their son.

After a year had passed and St. George's day came again, the grieving parents, following the ancient custom, prepared a table and entertained many guests. Remembering her son, the poor mother went to the icon of the saint, fell to the ground and began to pray that he somehow deliver her son from slavery. The mother then returned to her guests at the table. The host raised a glass and drank a toast to the honor of St. George. Just then their son appeared among them, holding a decanter of wine in his hand. In amazement and fear, they asked him how he had managed to come to them. He replied that as he was about to serve his master wine in Crete, a knight on horseback appeared before him, pulled him up onto the horse and carried him instantly to his parents' home.

All were amazed, and glorified God and His wonderful saint, George the Commander and Victory-bearer.

HYMN OF PRAISE: The Holy Great Martyr George

O George the martyr,
O George the victor:
Through suffering, you conquered,
And through death you have been glorified.
You held all things to be of less value
Than truth, O George.
You gave up earthly power and honor,
And stood beside the Living Christ.

O George the martyr,
O George the victor:
Pierced and broken with horrible tortures,
You were sustained by God's hand.
All your pains were as nothing-
By the power of God's mighty hand.
We all bow down before you
And glorify your name.

O Martyr George,
O Victor George:
Have mercy on us now,
By your prayers, protect us
Before the throne of Christ God,
Our Almighty Savior;
And pray that we not fear torture,
And that, by patience, we conquer!