July 6, 2017

The Veneration of Saint Sisoes the Great in Serbia

Saint Sisoes the Great has a unique veneration in Serbia. Whereas in the Greek tradition he is most known for his depiction in iconography as standing over the bones of Alexander the Great, in Serbia he is highly revered and valued by mothers and women as a protector of children and a speedy assistant in every sadness and trouble. It is a tradition for pious mothers especially to fast for seven days before his feast on July 6th; this is an unwritten rule that is being followed by an increasing number of mothers. It is not exactly known how Saint Sisoes came to be associated with children, though it is similar to how Saint Stylianos is venerated among the Greeks as the protector of children. A portion of his relic is also located in the Monastery of Saint Basil of Ostrog in Montenegro. This relic is said to have been given as a gift from a Greek official.